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phantom power Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-25-10 10:53 AM
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Weatherization stimulus off to cold start
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NEW YORK ( -- It was supposed to be fast and easy: Pay a bunch of out-of-work contractors to outfit old homes with new furnaces or insulation. It would put people back to work right away, and at the same time cut energy use and save people money.

So as part of the stimulus program, Congress gave the Energy Department's Weatherization Assistance Program a big funding boost. The program, which fixes up homes for low-income people and usually has a budget of around $200 million a year, got a $5 billion injection.

Yet a year later, just $441 million has been spent, raising questions as to just how effective the program is at stimulating the economy.

"It's an example of good intentions that weren't really thought through," said Kevin Plexico, a researcher at Input, a firm that tracks spending in the public sector. "You just don't have the capacity to absorb that amount on the local level."
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