U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), a member of the Senate Budget Committee, issued the following statement today on President Obama's budget proposal for Fiscal Year 2011:
"Rhode Islanders and families across the country are hurting right now, and they need to know their leaders in Washington are doing everything possible to put the unemployed back to work. The budget proposed today by President Obama sends a clear message that his administration is focused on doing just that.
"In the past year, the President has worked with Congress to bring our economy back from the brink and prevent the recession from becoming a depression. It is clear that the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) and other measures have helped, but we still need to do more to provide jobs for working families.
"The President's proposed budget will lay the foundation for sustained growth and prosperity. It will provide more than $300 billion in tax cuts over the next ten years to individuals, families, and businesses. It also includes $100 billion for immediate job creating measures such as investments in infrastructure and clean energy. In the Ocean State, where our infrastructure is aging fast and the demand for clean energy jobs is growing, these investments will make a real difference.
"The President has also made clear that he is serious about reducing the long-term deficit created by the reckless fiscal policies of the Bush Administration. Over the next decade this budget would reduce our national deficit by an estimated $1.2 trillion. It will also build on the investments in Health Information Technology established by ARRA, provide a $17 billion increase in Pell Grant funding, and make sure that bailout banks fully pay back the taxpayers by imposing a financial crisis responsibility fee, which will generate $90 billion over the next decade.
"As I said after his State of the Union speech, President Obama has provided us with a blueprint for renewed American prosperity. Today's budget proposal has given us further details on his plan for our country, and I look forward to working with my colleagues on the Budget Committee to craft a final budget and put the President's plan to work for Rhode Island and the nation."