Governor announces 5,550 Oregon jobs funded by Recovery Act
$188 million in federal dollars funded approximately 5,550 jobs during last three months
(Salem) – Governor Ted Kulongoski announced today that approximately 5,550 jobs were funded by $188 million in federal investments during the last three months through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (Recovery Act). Total investment this quarter in all Recovery Act projects and services, including education, health care and unemployment assistance, is approximately $389 million.
“This federal funding has helped to prevent further cuts to essential services like public safety and education,” Governor Kulongoski said. “During this economic crisis, Oregon has been able to provide employment opportunities, deliver emergency assistance, and improve communities in ways that would not otherwise have been possible.”
Throughout the state, Recovery Act funding is supporting community, veteran and senior centers, food banks, housing authorities, non-profit organizations, school districts and universities, energy conservation activities, as well as transportation and infrastructure upgrades.
Direct assistance such as unemployment benefits, health care, and food stamps continue to be the largest category of Recovery Act funding to Oregonians. During the last three months, approximately $197 million in assistance was placed in the hands of individual Oregonians, helping families meet their basic needs.
The Recovery Act is also helping Oregon families save on their utility bills by providing rebates to low-income homeowners of up to 70 percent of the cost of ENERGY STAR heating equipment, water heaters, refrigerators, dishwashers, and clothes washers. Approximately $3.6 million in federal funds were awarded for this program and Oregonians may receive rebates ranging from $400 to $2,000. Eligible Oregonians must own their home and earn less than 60 percent of the state’s median income levels.
Oregon’s Weatherization Program has weatherized 2,392 homes with Recovery Act funding to increase energy efficiency for low-income Oregonians. During the last three months, this program has invested $3.5 million and funded 95 full time equivalent jobs.
The transportation funding from the Recovery Act continues to improve Oregon’s roads throughout the state, strengthening communities and providing long-term economic development opportunities. The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) and local governments have made significant progress in completing projects, and the Recovery Act made a busy 2010 construction season even busier. During the months of July, August, and September more than $60 million in Recovery Act highway program spending made its way into Oregon's economy, funding 328 full time equivalent jobs.
More than $71 million in Recovery Act funding has been invested in education programs during the last three months. The largest of these awards is the State Fiscal Stabilization Fund (SFSF) program with $28 million expended this quarter to help restore education funding to pre-recession levels. In addition, approximately $22 million in IDEA grants have been provided to schools for special education programs. Recovery Act funds have paid the salaries of over 3,100 educators in Oregon’s K-12 schools and higher education system.
The Clean Water State Revolving Fund has expended over $11 million this quarter to capitalize its revolving loan fund financing for the construction of wastewater treatment facilities and associated infrastructure, green infrastructure, nonpoint source projects, and estuary projects. This award has funded 221 full time engineers, dump truck drivers, excavators and heavy equipment operators, welders, among others and will invest in infrastructure projects that will improve water quality and provide long-term economic benefits.
Professors, students, and researchers have invested over $4 million in 121 research projects that will explore treatments and cures to medical issues, advance renewable energy and renewable resources, and improve forest health and water quality, impacting every corner of the state.
Oregon’s recovery website details all of the information about spending within the state, allowing you to see how state agencies are investing in areas such as community service, education, energy, human services, housing, natural resources, public safety, as well as transportation and other job-creating infrastructure projects in Oregon.
By the end of the month, the federal recovery website will also have comprehensive data from all states, local entities and private recipients to provide a portal of information for media and the public.
The next quarterly report to the federal government from states on Recovery Act spending is scheduled for January 2011.
For more information on the highlights of Oregon’s latest Recovery Act report, click here.
For information about appliance rebates, visit the OHCS website or call 1-800-453-5511 (press option 2, selection 4).
To view the Oregon recovery website, go to: www.oregon.gov/recovery.
For the federal recovery website, go to: www.recovery.gov.
Anna Richter Taylor, 503-378-6169
Jodi Sherwood, 503-378-6496
Nicole Charlson (Recovery Act Team), 503-373-0289