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U-S House Stimulus Plan Pours $11 (B) Billion into Virginia

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Friday, January 30, 2009   

Richmond, VA – Virginia could receive more than $11 billion under the economic recovery package passed by the U.S. House of Representatives.

As Senate Democrats prepare to bring their version of the recovery package to the floor on Monday, an analysis of the House version prepared by the Office of the House Speaker shows Virginia is in line for $11.1 billion of the federal money. Nearly $1 billion would go to funding Medicaid, the state-run healthcare program for low-income families. The recovery package passed by the House includes an increase of almost 5 percent in each state's federal matching support for Medicaid.

Sandra Cook, vice-chair of the Virginia Organizing Project, says the money can't get here fast enough, considering the state's budget shortfall of at least $2.9 billion.

"The national recovery package moving through Congress comes at a critical moment. It will help take the sting out of some of the proposed cuts in the state budget. The infusion of funds will give Virginia the means to begin to meet the needs of many, many people."

The healthcare advocacy group Families USA estimates that the recovery plan in its current form also would result in more than 10,000 new jobs for Virginia in its first year, and almost $385 million in new wages for those workers.

"Critical Care," a Families USA report on the impact of the recovery package by state, lists Virginia as one of 25 states that either have planned, or are currently making, cuts to their healthcare services because of budget shortfalls. It can be viewed online at www.familiesusa.org.



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