One of my friends reminded me that of the time on a project, the planning and design can take up more time than the actual construction. That being said these are some of the least resource intensive parts of the project. The majority of the money is spent when the project is executed. The people working in the field stimulate the economy.
Here is what Speaker Bass and Senate President Steinberg put forward:
Currently the governor wants to waive environmental regulations on $1.2 billion dollars of work on highway projects. The Democrats have rebuffed the proposal.
Assembly Speaker Karen Bass and Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg jointly proposed expediting the spending of $2.3 billion in bond funds on "green" projects that secure environmental permits.
"There is no better time to move that money than in the midst of a struggling economy," Steinberg said.
Money for the construction would come from infrastructure bonds passed by voters in 2006. Projects could not be funded, however, until the state passes a budget to ease its projected $40 billion shortfall over 18 months.
The Democratic plan does not identify the projects to be funded, but it allocates sums for specific kinds of improvements - including water, public transit, flood protection, affordable housing and street pothole projects.
Bass and Steinberg said their "green economic stimulus" package would create more than 40,000 new jobs. The focus is on projects that are environmentally clean or curb greenhouse gas emissions.
"There is no need to gut environmental laws and risk public health and safety to get these projects going," Bass said.
This story was reported in the SacBee.