Durbin: President Obama’s Budget Would Create Jobs in Illinois and Maintain a Path Towards Reducing Our Debt

With 12.8 million Americans ? 600,000 Illinoisans ? still searching for work, President proposes investments in key job creating programs

WASHINGTON, D.C.–(ENEWSPF)–February 13, 2012.  Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) said the budget that President Obama delivered to Congress today makes tough choices to get us back on a stable financial footing while investing in three key areas – education, innovation and infrastructure – that will create jobs and strengthen the United States’ role as a global leader in the 21st century

“America owes over $15 trillion to our creditors and we still have millions out of work,” said Durbin.  “The President’s budget takes a balanced approach to these two challenges by reducing our debt while sustaining the economic recovery and creating jobs.  This is a budget that understands that the road to recovery and debt reduction requires investing intelligently in America’s workers and creating new business opportunities.”

The President’s plan coupled with the discretionary spending caps included in the Budget Control Act – passed in August 2011 – would reduce the deficit by $4 trillion over 10 years.  The plan includes nearly $600 billion in savings in mandatory spending over the next decade, with a large percentage coming from health savings that build on the Affordable Care Act.  Another $1.5 billion in savings would come from comprehensive tax reform that lowers rates, reduces deductions and loopholes and bolsters economic growth.  

Investing in Programs that Build

President Obama’s Budget calls for a $476 billion, six-year surface transportation reauthorization proposal that invests in America’s future, creates jobs, and reforms how Federal dollars are spent. As part of this plan, the Budget front-loads funding by $50 billion in the first year to create hundreds of thousands of jobs in industries suffering from protracted unemployment.

The Budget calls for an 86 percent increase in transportation spending in FY 2012 compared to FY 2010.   In Illinois, if the President’s budget is fully funded and historical patterns for the share of funds received by Illinois continues, the state could receive the following investments in our infrastructure:

  • $3 billion for roads and bridges ($1.5 from the base funding and another $1.5 from the up-front $50 billion).
  • $149 million for airport improvements, including O’Hare modernization.
  • $185.5 million for safe water and drinking water upgrades.
  • $965 million for rail and transit projects.

Investing in Programs that Educate

The President’s Budget also recommends increased investments in key education programs for the next fiscal year to help our students and our workers to prepare for the jobs of the 21st century.

In Illinois, if the President’s budget is fully funded and historical patterns for the share of funds received by Illinois continues, the state could receive the following investments in education:

  • $398 million for Head Start and child care programs focused on young children who will hugely benefit from learning to read with their peers.
  • $621 million for elementary and secondary education to help provide high-quality schooling in low-income communities.
  • $10.9 billion for grants and loans to help families in Illinois afford college.
  • $295 million for worker training, especially for programs that help local employers and local community colleges work together to train available local workers to do the jobs that local employers want to fill.

Investing in Programs that Promote Innovation

Finally, the President’s Budget also recommends targeted investments in key research and development programs for the next fiscal year to help promote innovation on our campuses and in our labs so that the growth industries of tomorrow are founded here today.

In Illinois, if the President’s budget is fully funded and historical patterns for the share of funds received by Illinois continues, the state could receive the following investments in research and development:

  • $1 billion for health research that can lead to medical breakthroughs that can lower the cost of health care over the long term.
$1.4 billion for scientific research that will keep the United States on the cutting edge in the development of new technologies – particularly in green energy – that will lead to the jobs of the future.

Source: durbin.senate.gov