Senator Nelson takes shot at Crist in announcing stimulus funds

08/26/09 Mitch E. Perry
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The U.S. Department of Commerce announced today that the Port of Tampa has been awarded a $2.2 million federal Economic Development Administration (EDA) grant toward at $4.5 million pier reconstruction and bulkhead replacement project.

The award is funded through a $150 million EDA supplemental appropriation under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. It is expected to result in maintaining 281 jobs.

Senator Bill Nelson also announced the funding while in Tampa today, and made reference to an embarrassing statistic involving Governor Charlie Crist and the stimulus funding.

Meanwhile, USA Today reports that federal stimulus money will pay for hundreds of extra roads, bridges and buildings this year because almost all of that work has been far less expensive than expected.

An analysis of 700 projects by the private firm Onvia finds that those jobs will cost an average of 16% less than expected. The paper reports that prices have fallen because of a huge slowdown in the construction industry. That’s pushed down the price of concrete, steel and other materials, and has sharply increased competition for the work that remains.

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