Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Stimulus in Leesburg

Recovery.gov is an interesting and well done site. It summarizes in a remarkably transparent way every dollar being spent as a result of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (i.e., the stimulus bill). With the advent of opinions that the stimulus was a bad idea, it is worthwhile to look at what Leesburg got thanks to the first action of this Democratic administration.
  • Cornwall Medical Center - Our very own hospital in Leesburg benefited from over 1.6 million dollars of stimulus funding, which is going for capital improvements and more staff to serve the underserved in Leesburg. It is estimated that this money will save and create over eighteen individual jobs, right here in Town. Those are 18 people spending money in Leesburg that would not have been able to do so without the stimulus bill

  • School Lunches - Money was made available to continue and enhance school lunch programs for kids who qualify for discounted lunches in Leesburg. The link between nutrition and achievement is well known. Investing in our kids food today means giving them a better chance to do well and find a good job tomorrow.

  • Patrick Nolan - Just in case you've heard the trope that stimulus money is only going to Democrats, Patrick Nolan (more well known for his affiliation with Prison Fellowship Ministries) received $1,800 stimulus dollars, personally, to "review applications."

  • VSTOP Program - The Recovery Act is spending money to help prevent violence against women, funding work in this area through the County, work being done right here in Leesburg.

  • County Energy Plan - Thanks to the Recovery Act, Loudoun is leading the way in local energy planning. This work is done right here in Leesburg.

  • Power Systems Upgrades - Pride Construction was awarded over 1.5 million dollars to fix the power systems at a Medical Center in Hawaii. The work will be done in the Pacific, but the company is here in Leesburg.

  • Meals For the Homebound - The ARRA funded just over $5,000 for meals that will go to Loudoun's homebound elderly. These meals are prepared right here in Leesburg.

  • Leesburg Crime Prevention - Stimulus money is being spent to provide analysis of crime in Leesburg, and planning to prevent it in the future. Over $58,000 was awarded to the Leesburg Police Department through this program.

  • Loudoun County Sheriffs - Over $3.1 million was spent by the Federal government, thanks to our Democratic Congress and President, to keep Sheriffs on the streets of Loudoun without having to raise local taxes. Those jobs were coordinated and kept right here in Leesburg.

  • Community Services - Almost $190,000 spent to fund community services through Community Services Block Grants. This work is based out of the Loudoun offices near Wal-Mart here in Leesburg.

  • Roads - Over $3.4 million has been spent on roads widening and resurfacing thanks to the Recovery Act. This not only creates jobs, but also helps save money as smoother roads mean that cars use less gas.

  • Kids with Disabilities - ARRA is funding over $100,000 of programs for kids with disabilities based here in Leesburg

  • Leesburg Energy Audit - The Town is receiving over $164,000 to evaluate and improve hot it is using energy, which will also save us money and help the environment in the long-run.

  • Weather Data Integration - Mosaic, based near the airport, received almost $500,000 to help integrate weather data for flight navigation, among other things.

  • Instrument Landing System - Thanks to the stimulus bill, Leesburg Airport will finally be able to support instrument landing, greatly enhancing its usefulness for local pilots and companies who might want to use it.
So there are no fewer than fifteen projects currently underway that would not have happened without the Recovery Act. That's millions of dollars being invested in our community, now. These are real jobs and real efforts to help our economy while making necessary improvements to our local infrastructure and meeting the needs of our community.

So what has Congress done for us? Quite a bit, actually. Yes, even us here in the small Virginia town of Leesburg.

Sunday, July 4, 2010