How Is Stimulus Money Being Used In Your Town?

As you probably know, I just got back from a cross-country and back road trip. I drove all the way to the east coast from New Mexico, with each way taking about 3.5 days. On the way east I took I-80 all the way to upstate New York, where I jumped on I-90, and on the way west I took I-70 (just for some different scenery!) – and I hit a lot of construction on all 3 highways…most of which was being funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. How did I know this? Because at every construction site, on every closed lane, and for every bridge closed for repairs (including the Mississippi), I came across the signs telling me so. They look like this:

From right outside Denver and all the way to Boston and back to Denver, I must have seen at least 30-40 different construction zones, all with many, many workers digging, paving, restructuring, disassembling, etc – and I was happy to see it. Sure, it occasionally slowed down my trip, but I was psyched that all these people were at work earning a living. Agree or disagree with the stimulus, (I agree – nice to see govt money helping people instead of banks, if its going to be used), it is putting some people to work across the country rebuilding our infrastructure. And if they are doing all this work (and the other projects being talked about) with only 14% of the stimulus money being handed out so far, there should be a lot more work being done in the coming months. Which leads me to the reason for this post – Are you seeing stimulus money being spent in your town? Here in Taos, we got our dilapidated street in the center of town repaved and repainted – much to the excitement of the locals. But what about where you live and/or travel? Are you seeing projects funded by the stimulus? I really am curious to see where and how the money is being spent in different areas, after seeing all the construction on our nation’s highways!

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Comments (6)

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  1. Melissa says:

    I work for a construction company. About 90% of the bids I read are at least partially funded by the stimulus money. I’m also reading 200% more contracts than I was this month last year. Mark my words that you’ll be seeing even more signs.

  2. I have several of these signs around my area too. My first thought when I saw them was, “how much did they spend on those signs and couldn’t that money have been put to a better use!?” Haha…

  3. david says:

    I thought that too, but most construction sites have signs saying who is doing the work anyway. I also thought maybe the signs were made in prisons lol

  4. David says:

    Haven’t seen any of it being spent here in Atlanta, but I would seriously agree whole-heartedly with the comment about the signs themselves. They should worry more about putting Americans back to work rather than making sure everybody knows what they are doing with the money.

    A good article, though, thanks.

  5. Dora says:

    Saw this post yesterday and was going to comment that I had not seen anything happening due to the stimulus plan, but I decided not to, thinking I may have been wrong. However, in today’s news I read an article stating just that, there has been nothing done with the stimulus plan as far as “shovel-ready” projects. It seems that my area, Long Island, NY, didn’t get enough money anyway, and if they do decide on small project, they won’t be ready until January when “shovel-ready” means nothing if the ground is frozen. Besides construction projects, the government is directing funds sorely needed by our NYC police force to smaller towns with less action. Interesting.

  6. I saw one of these signs for the first time a few weeks ago. They were repaving one of the interstates close to my house.