Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Senate passes stimulus

From C-Span today:

The Senate, by a vote of 61-37 passed H.R. 1, the economic stimulus legislation. Three Republican Senators voted for passage.

See this link for the debate. What are the differences between the House and Senate versions? From the AP:

Key differences between the $827 billion Senate version of President Barack Obama's economic recovery plan and the $820 billion version that passed the House last month.


_State aid: The Senate bill has $39 billion in education aid to states. The House measure includes $54 billion. It also includes a separate $25 billion block grant for states to use on other programs.

_Direct aid to individuals: The Senate devotes $17 billion for one-time $300 payments to Social Security recipients, poor people on Supplemental Security Income and veterans receiving disability and pensions. The House has $4 billion to provide a one-time additional Supplemental Security Income payment to poor elderly and disabled people of $450 for individuals and $630 for married couples.

_School construction: The House provides $19.5 billion to build and repair school and university facilities. The money was stripped from the Senate bill.


_Alternative minimum tax: The Senate devotes $70 billion to "patch" the alternative minimum tax, saving more than 20 million taxpayers a 2009 tax increase averaging about $2,000. The House bill does not include that provision.

_Homebuyer tax credit: The Senate provides $35.5 billion for a $15,000 tax credit for purchasers of homes bought in the year after the bill takes effect. The House includes $2.6 billion and limits its smaller $7,500 credit to first-time homebuyers for homes purchased from Jan. 1, 2009 to July 1, 2009 and phases out the credit for couples making more than $150,000.

_Carbuyer tax deduction: The Senate devotes $11 billion to make interest payments on loans for new cars and automobile sales taxes deductible. The House bill does not.

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