WASHINGTON, DC – November 5, 2009 – (RealEstateRama) — Today Congressman Mark Schauer (D-MI) voted to stimulate the local economy and provide stability to Michigan families hit hardest by the recession by extending unemployment benefits, the homebuyers’ tax credit, and tax relief for military families and businesses. The Emergency Unemployment Compensation Extension Act (HR 3548) will provide immediate assistance, extending relief to the 62,753 Michigan workers whose benefits would otherwise run out by the end of the year.
“This bill will offer a much-needed lifeline to struggling Michigan families and give unemployed workers a chance to get back on their feet,” said Schauer. “The families who receive these benefits will be putting money right back into our local economy – buying groceries, filling their cars with gas, and making their mortgage payments on time.”
The extension is fully paid for and will provide immediate, effective stimulus to the local economy. The Congressional Budget Office has cited unemployment benefits as one of the most cost-effective forms of economic stimulus, and every dollar spent on unemployment benefits generates $1.63 in new demand, according to Moody’s chief economist Mark Zandi.
The legislation will provide families in all states with 14 weeks of additional benefits, and six more weeks to the 27 states with the highest unemployment rate, including Michigan. Workers in these high unemployment states who have exhausted or will soon exhaust their benefits will be eligible for a total of 20 additional weeks of emergency unemployment compensation.
“This legislation takes important, immediate steps to help stabilize our small businesses and strengthen the local housing market,” said Rep. Schauer. “These efforts are crucial to growing our economy and putting it back on sound footing.”
The bill includes an extension of the $8,000 first-time homebuyer tax credit through April 30, 2010 and provides a $6,500 credit to new purchasers who have lived in their current residence for five years or more. It also helps military families struggling to make mortgage payments by making those payments tax-exempt.
To breathe life back into American businesses suffering from huge losses, this bill allows U.S. companies to carry back losses incurred in either 2008 or 2009 against income earned in any of the five prior years.