Tag Archives: governor

700 of 796 stimulus jobs are state workers in New Hampshire!

Nashua got the fourth most cash of any New Hampshire community from the first phase of federal stimulus money, falling behind Manchester, Windham and Concord.

Nashua, the state’s second largest city, received $16.1 million from 20 different grant programs ranging from $5,005 for an air conditioner and other upgrades at the Nashua Children’s Home to $3.2 million in federal subsidy to children with special needs in the city’s schools.

Manchester received the most, $40.6 million, while the capital city, Concord, got $24.3 million.

Acting State Stimulus Office Director Orville “Bud” Fitch presented an inch-thick, initial progress report on $336 million in discretionary, federal stimulus money that thus far has flowed into the state.

The figures will be updated quarterly, he told the Executive Council at its breakfast meeting on the Manchester Community College campus.

“These numbers are not complete, but I am highly confident that they are up to date,” Fitch said during an interview.

The report also revealed that through the end of June that stimulus money created or saved 796 jobs, with 700 of those state workers who did not have to get laid off thanks to the federal grants, Fitch said.

Federal highway money accounted for 75 jobs and weatherization programs kept or added 16 to the payroll, he added.

Road or building project locale, rather than median income or economic woes, played a big part in communities that received an Obama administration windfall.

For example, Windham is only the 21st largest community in the state with more than 11,500 residents, but it received the second greatest grant total, $27.6 million.

That’s because more than 95 percent of the money going to the town – $27.3 million – is to pay for widening that stretch of Interstate 93 that goes through the town.

Likewise, Concord got $7.6 million to resurface from Exits 14 through 17 on I-93 and claimed as its own many statewide initiatives such as the near-$700,000 grant to create a State Police cold case unit

Nashua received $6.3 million in transportation money, much of it to reconstruct the aircraft-parking apron at Boire Field and make other airport improvements.

Manchester, with 60 grants, got considerably more than Nashua, thanks in part to education grants that were based on the number of low-income students in Title I and students with special needs.

Education money to Manchester ($16.3 million) was more than double what Nashua got ($7.1 million).

Manchester’s grant total ballooned as its 25 grants to low-income housing projects ($6.3 million) were individually named while Nashua’s money pool was initially given only to the Nashua Housing Authority ($1.2 million).

Fitch noted that stimulus money going to programs like the anti-poverty Southern New Hampshire Services Inc. are listed as going to Manchester but spread throughout the southern tier to include Nashua.

Locally, other grant totals thus far included Amherst ($535,959), Hudson ($1.4 million), Merrimack ($1.2 million), Milford ($874,288), Hollis ($450,213), Litchfield ($532,683), Brookline ($146,031), Londonderry ($1.2 million), Lyndeborough ($30,100) Mason ($22,044), Mont Vernon ($57,867), New Ipswich ($482,464), Pelham ($556,246), Sharon ($0), Temple ($0) and Wilton ($177,654).

Within the next week, Fitch said his office plans to have posted in Google map fashion a push pin next to each community the public can click on to find a full listing of all stimulus grant dollars going to that city or town.

Gov. John Lynch praised Fitch, who’s been working on his own since a summer intern went back to school. The Legislature has already approved a 15-month, $2 million budget for the stimulus office that will ultimately have five, full-time staff including a $120,000-a-year director.

“He does a remarkable job equal to the work of a dozen people,” Lynch said.

Article is written by Kevin Landrigan with the Nashua Telegraph in New Hampshire.

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Indiana Governor joins motorcycle ride through southern Indiana

August 14, 2009- Governor Mitch Daniels (Indiana) joined more than 400 members of American Bikers Aimed Toward Education (ABATE) to lead a charity motorcycle ride through southern Indiana. The fifth annual ride raised support for the National Guard Relief Fund which provides grants for the families of Hoosier members of the Indiana National Guard or Armed Forces Reserves who have been called to active duty since September 11, 2001.

Brad Pitt interview on Real Time with Bill Maher

Steve Crowder comments about this interview and gives his viewpoint on how Religion = Christianity in hollywood.  I should say right off the bat that I can’t just blame Brad Pitt. The plague of closed-mindedness permeates every corner of Hollywood… Brad Pitt just happens to be the one who’s most recently crystallized it so perfectly. Much like the time Megan Fox tipped Tinseltown’s hand when she said that if given the chance, she’d urge Megatron to only murder the “white trash, hillbilly, anti-gay, super bible-beating people in Middle America,” Brad Pitt had a tongue-slip with his anti-Christian comment this weekend. However, I must give credit where credit’s due folks: he made the comment on the Bill Maher show. It takes guts to take such a stance on that program. Doesn’t at least a part of you admire his moral fortitude?

To start with, Brad Pitt said that he was thinking of running for mayor of New Orleans, on an “Anti-religion, pro-legalization of marijuana and pro-gay marriage” platform. I know, I know… What a risky position to take in Tinseltown, right?

After Brads continued “anti-religion” commentary, Bill Maher decided to step up the game with his uniquely hateful brand of bigotry that’s made him oh so popular with 13-year-old atheists everywhere. In a display of “compassion,” Pitt went on to say, “Well I don’t think any Christians watch this show anyway.”

See what happened there…?  Without even realizing it, Brad Pitt’s showed us that his use of the word “religion” is really inter-changeable with “Christianity,” as is the case with most of Hollywood. The entertainment industry is never anti-Religion; it’s simply anti-Christian. This goes both hand-in-hand with Hollywood’s obsession with immorality, as well as their compulsion to take shots at society’s whipping boy while praising themselves for their “risky performances.”

Brad then went on to say, “I never wanted to step on anyone’s religion” (don’t worry, that doesn’t stop him from doing so immediately afterward), “Until I started to see it define policy.”

Ooooh okay Brad, I get it. You don’t mind people having a strong worldview… Until it begins to manifest itself through their actions… Unless of course their world-view is “pro-marijuana” such as your own as displayed by your subsequent trip down memory lane where you fondly recalled your joint-rolling escapades.

Hollywood Bottom-line: If someone’s “religion” is nothing more than moral relativism, it should absolutely determine policy. If it actually adheres to an established code of conduct/ethics, you better keep it to yourself you, jerk!

*Note*: Keep in mind that none of this applies to Islam. You see, in Hollywood, the most anti-gay, anti-women, anti-peace religion gets a free pass in the name of political correctness. Just keep this in mind if you’re trying to make sense of everything.

“I was raised in a religious household… It just didn’t work for me in the long run,” Brad went on to say. Heck, I guess it wouldn’t work for me either if I wanted to live a life of hedonistic bliss similar to our Hollywood counterparts. If I were living a life of booze, sex and cocaine-off-of-the-ladies-hipbones, the last thing I’d want is to have held myself accountable to a power greater than myself.

Hollywood, we get it. The Christian faith just doesn’t work for you “in the long run.” However, for a large percentage of this country (the same country that makes your movies millions of dollars), it does. So please, for all of our sakes, keep your “beliefs to yourself” and just “stop the hate.”

Can I get an “Amen”?

Sarah Palin commenting on “Death Panels”

Sarah Palin wrote commentary on her Facebook page concerning the “Death Panels” in the health care reform bill.  Here is her commentary:

Yesterday President Obama responded to my statement that Democratic health care proposals would lead to rationed care; that the sick, the elderly, and the disabled would suffer the most under such rationing; and that under such a system these “unproductive” members of society could face the prospect of government bureaucrats determining whether they deserve health care.

The President made light of these concerns. He said:

“Let me just be specific about some things that I’ve been hearing lately that we just need to dispose of here. The rumor that’s been circulating a lot lately is this idea that somehow the House of Representatives voted for death panels that will basically pull the plug on grandma because we’ve decided that we don’t, it’s too expensive to let her live anymore….It turns out that I guess this arose out of a provision in one of the House bills that allowed Medicare to reimburse people for consultations about end-of-life care, setting up living wills, the availability of hospice, etc. So the intention of the members of Congress was to give people more information so that they could handle issues of end-of-life care when they’re ready on their own terms. It wasn’t forcing anybody to do anything.” [1]

The provision that President Obama refers to is Section 1233 of HR 3200, entitled “Advance Care Planning Consultation.” [2] With all due respect, it’s misleading for the President to describe this section as an entirely voluntary provision that simply increases the information offered to Medicare recipients. The issue is the context in which that information is provided and the coercive effect these consultations will have in that context.

Section 1233 authorizes advanced care planning consultations for senior citizens on Medicare every five years, and more often “if there is a significant change in the health condition of the individual … or upon admission to a skilled nursing facility, a long-term care facility… or a hospice program.” [3] During those consultations, practitioners must explain “the continuum of end-of-life services and supports available, including palliative care and hospice,” and the government benefits available to pay for such services. [4]

Now put this in context. These consultations are authorized whenever a Medicare recipient’s health changes significantly or when they enter a nursing home, and they are part of a bill whose stated purpose is “to reduce the growth in health care spending.” [5] Is it any wonder that senior citizens might view such consultations as attempts to convince them to help reduce health care costs by accepting minimal end-of-life care? As Charles Lane notes in the Washington Post, Section 1233 “addresses compassionate goals in disconcerting proximity to fiscal ones…. If it’s all about obviating suffering, emotional or physical, what’s it doing in a measure to “bend the curve” on health-care costs?” [6]

As Lane also points out:

Though not mandatory, as some on the right have claimed, the consultations envisioned in Section 1233 aren’t quite “purely voluntary,” as Rep. Sander M. Levin (D-Mich.) asserts. To me, “purely voluntary” means “not unless the patient requests one.” Section 1233, however, lets doctors initiate the chat and gives them an incentive — money — to do so. Indeed, that’s an incentive to insist.

Patients may refuse without penalty, but many will bow to white-coated authority. Once they’re in the meeting, the bill does permit “formulation” of a plug-pulling order right then and there. So when Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.) denies that Section 1233 would “place senior citizens in situations where they feel pressured to sign end-of-life directives that they would not otherwise sign,” I don’t think he’s being realistic. [7]

Even columnist Eugene Robinson, a self-described “true believer” who “will almost certainly support” “whatever reform package finally emerges”, agrees that “If the government says it has to control health-care costs and then offers to pay doctors to give advice about hospice care, citizens are not delusional to conclude that the goal is to reduce end-of-life spending.” [8]

So are these usually friendly pundits wrong? Is this all just a “rumor” to be “disposed of”, as President Obama says? Not according to Democratic New York State Senator Ruben Diaz, Chairman of the New York State Senate Aging Committee, who writes:

Section 1233 of House Resolution 3200 puts our senior citizens on a slippery slope and may diminish respect for the inherent dignity of each of their lives…. It is egregious to consider that any senior citizen … should be placed in a situation where he or she would feel pressured to save the government money by dying a little sooner than he or she otherwise would, be required to be counseled about the supposed benefits of killing oneself, or be encouraged to sign any end of life directives that they would not otherwise sign. [9]

Of course, it’s not just this one provision that presents a problem. My original comments concerned statements made by Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, a health policy advisor to President Obama and the brother of the President’s chief of staff. Dr. Emanuel has written that some medical services should not be guaranteed to those “who are irreversibly prevented from being or becoming participating citizens….An obvious example is not guaranteeing health services to patients with dementia.” [10] Dr. Emanuel has also advocated basing medical decisions on a system which “produces a priority curve on which individuals aged between roughly 15 and 40 years get the most chance, whereas the youngest and oldest people get chances that are attenuated.” [11]

President Obama can try to gloss over the effects of government authorized end-of-life consultations, but the views of one of his top health care advisors are clear enough. It’s all just more evidence that the Democratic legislative proposals will lead to health care rationing, and more evidence that the top-down plans of government bureaucrats will never result in real health care reform.

[1] See http://blogs.abcnews.com/politicalpunch/2009/08/president-obama-addresses-sarah-palin-death-panels-wild-representations.html.
[2] See http://edlabor.house.gov/documents/111/pdf/publications/AAHCA-BillText-071409.pdf
[3] See HR 3200 sec. 1233 (hhh)(1); Sec. 1233 (hhh)(3)(B)(1), above.
[4] See HR 3200 sec. 1233 (hhh)(1)(E), above.
[5] See http://edlabor.house.gov/documents/111/pdf/publications/AAHCA-BillText-071409.pdf
[6] See http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/08/07/AR2009080703043.html].
[7] Id.
[8] See http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/08/10/AR2009081002455.html].
[9] See http://www.nysenate.gov/press-release/letter-congressman-henry-waxman-re-section-1233-hr-3200.
[10] See http://www.ncpa.org/pdfs/Where_Civic_Republicanism_and_Deliberative_Democracy_Meet.pdf
[11] See http://www.scribd.com/doc/18280675/Principles-for-Allocation-of-Scarce-Medical-Interventions.