Stimulus Spending & New Opportunities: You Keep Track
It has been months since the much-debated and highly-publicized $787 billion government stimulus package was approved by Congress. And considering that federal taxpayer dollars were allocated for the stimulus, it is no wonder that Americans want to know how the money is being spent and how what new job and benefit opportunities have been created by the infusion of funds.
The main 3 goals of the American Recovery Act of 2009 were identified as:
- creating and saving jobs
- spurring economic activity and investing in long-term economic growth
- fostering unprecedented levels of accountability and transparency in government spending
How can you find out how government stimulus dollars are being spent?
The independent agency administering the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 launched a website-- www.Recovery.gov-- earlier this year. And just this week, it was announced that the website has been updated and redesigned to make it easier to use and easier to track the destination of government stimulus funding.
To make good on the Act's goal of transparency and accountability, the original website included tools for users to see how the stimulus dollars were being spent. And this week, the site debuted improvements such as a ramped-up interactive map showing distributions made by state, an increased amount of data available, addition of tutorials and glossary, and additional graphs and charts as a visual depiction of spending.
Here are a few features of the re-designed site:
- the landing page breaks down government spending according to contracts awarded and those up for bid, as well as grants that have been approved.
- the site features an accounting of how much funding has been allocated to individual agencies---with the Department of Health and Human Services topping the list at over $31 billion.
- there is a listing of funding by state featuring California, New York, and Texas in the top three spots.
Where can you find out about existing employment and funding opportunities resulting from the stimulus?
Recovery.gov contains a tab called "Opportunities". Included in this section are:
- job opportunities - includes links to Recovery Act related jobs
- grant opportunities - lists grants available to organizations, small businesses, and individuals
- loan opportunities - loans available to pay for education, disaster relief, insure mortgages, and to farmers.
- contract opportunities - lists contracts that have been awarded and those that are up for bid.
The enhanced website gives savvy consumers and taxpayers new tools to follow stimulus dollars from the government back to the economy. Make sure the government is doing their math right by keeping track of the government spending on your own. And see how you can benefit from opportunities that have been launched from the funding.
- Federal stimulus-monitoring website gets an update (Los Angeles Times)
- To Track Stimulus, A New Version of Recovery.gov (Pro Publica)
- Feds Refresh Stimulus Tracking Site (InformationWeek)
- Recovery.gov relaunch puts stimulus spending on the map (ComputerWorld)
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