Obama reveals $50 billion stimulus package

Aug. 1, 2008 at 4:11 PM
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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla., Aug. 1 (UPI) -- Likely Democratic U.S. presidential candidate Barack Obama unveiled a $50-billion emergency stimulus plan that includes energy rebates of up to $1,000.

Obama's plan to stimulate the economy, revealed while he stumped in St. Petersburg, Fla., also calls for a windfall profit tax on oil companies for five years and $25 billion to refill the federal Highway Trust Fund, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Besides funding the Highway Trust Fund, the money would prevent cutbacks in road and bridge maintenance and fast-tracked projects to repair schools.

The other $25 billion would be directed to a fund that would prevent state and local cuts to health, education or housing assistance or act as a counter to property tax increases, said the document posted on Obama's campaign Web site. It also would provide funding for home heating and weatherization assistance during the winter months.

The energy rebates would be funded through the five-year windfall profit tax on oil companies and be a "down payment" on Obama's long-term plan "to provide middle-class families with at least $1,000 per year in permanent tax relief," the posted plan said. The rebate would be $500 for individuals and $1,000 for married couples.

"This (energy) rebate will be enough to offset the increased cost of gas for a working family over the next four months," Obama said during a town hall meeting.

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