Congressman Phil Hare (D-IL) today released the following statement in response to President Obama's proposed FY 2011 budget.
"For the second consecutive year, President Obama has proposed a fiscally responsible budget that makes some of the short-term investments our economy desperately needs while putting our nation back on the path to long-term prosperity. The President's proposed budget begins to reduce the deficit and addresses our unemployment crisis through a number of tax incentives to spur job creation by small businesses. I believe we must couple this with a direct, large-scale public jobs program that immediately puts people back to work.
"The budget includes a strong investment in education, with $2.1 billion slated for schools, students, and teachers in Illinois. It increases the maximum Pell Grant and offers loan forgiveness for low-income students. Strengthening our schools is critical to our future competiveness.
"On veterans, the President's budget hits another home run. It includes over $50 billion in advanced appropriations for the VA so our heroes can be treated in timely fashion. If enacted, funding for the VA will have increased by 20 percent since the President took office.
"The budget builds on the historic $8 billion Recovery Act down payment for high-speed rail with another $1 billion, creating jobs and sparking transportation innovation across the country.
"It also includes many important local priorities including $21 million to restore the Mississippi River, billions of dollars for clean energy technologies like nuclear power and carbon capture and sequestration, and $237 million to acquire the Thomson Correctional Facility, all major job creators.
"As Congress considers the President's request, I will be pushing for an even sharper focus on job creation and a payment for our seniors who simply cannot afford to go without their Social Security cost of living adjustment."