A considerable amount of information is available about states and localities relative to the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. About $250 billion flows to and through the states for higher education, incentive grants, Medicaid funding, highways, bridges, economic development and more, according to the National Association of State Budget Officers. As of September 25, 2009, about $51 billion was paid in fiscal year 2009.
The stimulus act is closely tracked with detailed information on actual funds spent, the beneficiaries of these funds, how funds are used, and controls the states have in place for monitoring purposes. The Government Accountability Office has dedicated resources to these areas as have most states for tracking purposes.
What’s missing however are data on the actual outcomes for spent funds. Did they actually improve service? Did they permit service levels to remain at acceptable levels? Did they succeed in sparking innovations that will lead to long-term savings? How?
This blog will take a step toward addressing this need and will include commentary; annotated links to useful websites, articles, and studies; short pieces discussing individual projects with a focus on the actual results achieved; mini-interviews; statistics; and more.
Our hope is that this blog will:
- provide readers with lessons learned to duplicate proven approaches;
- move the general discussion of the stimulus towards one of results;
- provide readers with a “one-stop-shop” approach to locate stimulus information; and
- provide private and public sector readers the opportunity to see their own state at work and compare one state to another.
Let us know how we are doing!