Skip to content
Link copied to clipboard

White House says stimulus created or saved 640,329 jobs

The $787 billion stimulus bill passed in February is directly responsible for saving or creating about 640,329 jobs so far, the Obama administration said yesterday.

The $787 billion stimulus bill passed in February is directly responsible for saving or creating about 640,329 jobs so far, the Obama administration said yesterday.

The jobs were generated through contracts, grants, and loans totaling $159 billion, according to the government's Web site.

California, the most populous state, received the most money, $18.5 billion for programs that resulted in 110,185 jobs.

In New Jersey, the government said, 24,109 jobs were created or saved, the eighth-most nationwide. Pennsylvania ranked 27th, with 7,427 jobs.

However, all of the figures disclosed yesterday are partial because they cover only direct stimulus spending by the federal government. That money went to businesses, state and local governments, educational institutions, and nonprofit organizations.

The figures do not include the job-related effect of extended unemployment insurance benefits or tax cuts authorized by the stimulus package. Those cuts amount to an estimated $62 billion to $80 billion, but the recipients do not have to report to the government how many jobs they saved or created.

Yesterday's numbers are based on reports from recipients of stimulus funds between Feb. 17 and Sept. 30. The funds were authorized by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 to help the nation bounce back from the recession.

"The Recovery Act is operating as advertised," Vice President Biden said yesterday.

It "has helped pull a number of states out of crisis," Biden said. "This is real stuff" and it is "helping Americans get through these really tough times."

But the figures likely will become part of the political debate over the effect of the act. Republicans have been critical of the stimulus, saying the spending will increase the federal deficit and still not get enough money into the economy to create jobs quickly.

The Obama administration wants to create or save 3.5 million jobs by the end of 2010.

The figures from Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board support administration estimates that the stimulus has saved or created a total of one million jobs when additional recipient reports are received and when the effect of the tax cuts is included, said Jared Bernstein, Biden's chief economist.

"We're on track for 3.5 million by the end of next year," Bernstein said in an interview. "These are teachers in classrooms, cops on the beat," or construction workers, among others.

About 28 percent of the stimulus money goes to states and low-income people. An additional 37 percent goes for tax cuts. About 35 percent, or $276 billion, is for direct spending on public-works projects, such as roads, bridges, and airports, and is subject to quarterly reporting.

Stimulus Jobs

This is a partial picture of states in which the most jobs were created or saved through federal stimulus spending.*

Rank/State Jobs

1. California 110,185

2. New York 40,620

3. Washington 34,517

4. Florida 29,321

5. North Carolina 28,073

6. Georgia 24,681

7. Illinois 24,448

8. New Jersey 24,109

9. Michigan 22,514

10. Texas 19,572

27. Pennsylvania 7,427

*From Feb. 17 through Sept. 30. Includes only the effect of direct federal spending, not tax cuts.

SOURCE: Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board