Congressman Steve Rothman sent the following letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on November 4, 2008:
Dear Speaker Pelosi,
I am writing to pledge my strong support for the prompt consideration of a second stimulus package to help get our economy back on track, create good paying new jobs, improve our country's vital but crumbling infrastructure, and speed assistance to tens of millions of Americans who are struggling to make financial ends meet.
As you know, an important component of this proposed package is relief for cash-strapped state and local governments that are struggling due to the recent economic downturn. In my home state of New Jersey, infrastructure improvements are especially neededin particular, we must rebuild our state's roads, rails, bridges, tunnels, electric grid, and water supply systems. Due to the high cost of property in New Jersey, we also consider affordable housing to be a critical part of our state's infrastructure. Far too many residents are feeling squeezed by our state's property taxeswhich are the highest in the nationas well as the negative financial impacts of the faltering economy, and they desperately need more affordable housing.
While you are determining the final components of the second stimulus, I respectfully request that a portion of this funding be used to enable states to build new or improve existing affordable housing. Many states, including New Jersey, have asked Congress for a multi-billion dollar bailout so that they are able to provide basic state functions, such as Medicaid payments and infrastructure investment. However, New Jersey also desperately needs additional funding to construct or upgrade affordable housingprojects that will help to achieve all of the goals of the second stimulus, including creating new jobs, improving our infrastructure, helping struggling American families to get back on their feet, and fueling our state's economic recovery.
I appreciate your consideration of my request and I look forward to working with you in coming days to ensure passage of the second economic stimulus package.
STEVEN R. ROTHMAN
Member of Congress