by Max Brantley
DEMOCRATIC PARTY NEWS RELEASE
Three Local Beneficiaries of the Recovery Act
GOP Senate Candidates Oppose Creating Jobs in Arkansas
Will They Also Call For These Projects To Be Repealed?
LITTLE ROCK— Today, Senator Blanche Lincoln is highlighting Recovery Act dollars at work in Arkansas with visits to three entities that have received Recovery Act funds—the Arkansas School for the Deaf, UAMS, and the Boys and Girls Club of Saline County. Over the past days and weeks the Republican Senate candidates have continually protested the Act. Today gives them an opportunity to tell us what they do not like about three local examples working for Arkansas.
They oppose child nutrition programs at the Arkansas School for the Deaf? The school used a $42,227 grant from the Recovery Act to purchase a complete serving line and salad bar for the school cafeteria. In addition, the school has successfully implemented a Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program with a $3,766 grant they receive for the 2009-2010 school year.
They oppose new research laboratories at the Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute—Arkansas’s only academic cancer research center? UAMS has been awarded nearly $10.5 million through the Recovery Act to build a 12-story expansion tower. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) grant will fund completion of two research laboratory floors in the building, which is scheduled to open its first phase this summer. The grant will fund completion of the 9th and 11th floors in the institute’s second tower, resulting in an additional 33,660 net square feet of research space.
They oppose the Boys and Girls Club of Saline County, an organization that served 3,812 kids in 2009 alone? The Boys and Girls Club received $42,500 in Recovery Act funds to hire staff, cover supplies and operating costs, and implement new programming.
“Time and time again these Republicans have opposed the Recovery Act and John Boozman actually voted against it,” said Gabe Holmstrom, Senior Advisor to the Democratic Party of Arkansas. “Today Arkansas has tangible results from the Recovery Act—actual jobs created here in the state. We deserve to know why the GOP candidates would eliminate them.”
A year ago John Boozman said: “Republicans are going to have to get back to being fiscally responsible and come up with real solutions. We can't be the party of ‘no’.” Well Mr. Boozman, what is your solution?
Baker Promised to Make Opposition to Recovery Act a Campaign Issue. In his Senate announcement in September 2009, Baker said the $787B stimulus would be a campaign issue. [Arkansas News Bureau, 9/02/09]
Coleman Was an Opponent of the Recovery Act. In August 2009, Curtis Coleman came out as “an opponent of recent federal stimulus spending.” Coleman however, said it would be too late to do anything about it if he's elected. To replenish the $789 billion stimulus package would require raising taxes, he said, which he doesn't want to do, preferring to focus on spending cuts. "I don't want to punish taxpayers," he said. [Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 8/13/09]
Hendren Voted Against Allowing the State to Tap $59 Million in Federal Recovery Act Funding for Unemployment Benefits. In March 2009, state Senator Kim Hendren voted against approved changing the state's unemployment benefit law to expand the number of recipients and allow the state to tap into $59 million in federal stimulus money. The overhaul of the state's unemployment benefits law passed on a 19-7 vote. [AP, 3/26/09]
Reynolds Opposed the Recovery Act. In July 2009, Republican U.S. Senate candidate Conrad Reynolds in the same speech where he stressed that Americans need to speak out against what he described as domestic enemies