How Stimulus Funds Are Being Used [Archive] - RetrieverTraining.Net - the RTF

: How Stimulus Funds Are Being Used

Gerry Clinchy
08-03-2010, 08:51 PM

highlights 100 stimulus projects that they say have "questionable goals," are "being mismanaged or were poorly planned" and are even "costing jobs and hurting small businesses."

The Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center was awarded $71,623 to study what the report calls, "Monkeys Getting High for Science."

Bonnie Davis, a spokeswoman for The Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center, said the "small grant has helped protect very important research that will have significant impact on public health in regards to cocaine addiction and the issue of relapse."

The California Academy of Sciences is receiving nearly $1 million in stimulus funds to send researchers to the Southwest Indian Ocean Islands and East Africa to capture, photograph and analyze thousands of exotic ants. [Guess they'll be spending their money somewhere other than the U.S.]

There's also funding for yoga and hot flashes. Researchers at Wake Forest University have received nearly $300,000 to study whether integral yoga "can be an effective method to reduce the frequency and/or severity of hot flashes" in breast cancer survivors.

oil giant BP, the company behind the worst oil spill in the nation's history, is benefiting from $308 million given to Hydrogen Energy California -- a company it owns -- to build a California power plant that won't even break ground for another two years.

The funds were given to BP by the Department of Energy. While the natural gas electricity plant in Kern County would generate enough low-carbon electricity for 150,000 family homes, according to the company, construction will not start for another two years and the plant is not set to become operational until the end of 2014

In addition, it turns out the $308 million awarded is only made up of $175 million in stimulus funds, with the remaining portion coming from other sources.

According to Feilders, however, construction is not slated to begin until 2012, a year later than the Coburn-McCain report indicated.

Actually, the power plant is probably one of the better items on the list, but the jobs won't materialize for quite a while. OTOH, since the private sector was already getting the plant underway, maybe that $175 million could have been given later as some kind of a tax credit?

the U.S. Forest Service in Washington state, which is spending more than half a million dollars to replace the windows on a visitor center at Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument that today sits closed with no set re-open date.