Stimulus Being Measured By Jobs Created, Saved - NewsOn6.com - Tulsa, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports - KOTV.com |

Stimulus Being Measured By Jobs Created, Saved

Posted: Updated:
On the stimulus reporting Web site, the Oklahoma Community Service Commission, better known as AmeriCorps, received two grants totaling $431,000 dollars. On the stimulus reporting Web site, the Oklahoma Community Service Commission, better known as AmeriCorps, received two grants totaling $431,000 dollars.
Since Recovery.org started reporting the number of jobs created and saved by stimulus spending, there have been many inaccuracies in job numbers reported, and that's creating confusion. Since Recovery.org started reporting the number of jobs created and saved by stimulus spending, there have been many inaccuracies in job numbers reported, and that's creating confusion.
"All in all, it was very confusing, and the federal agency was really confused about it, too. Everybody was trying really hard to get it right, but nobody knew how," said Nancy Sharrock, the Executive Director of AmeriCorps Oklahoma. "All in all, it was very confusing, and the federal agency was really confused about it, too. Everybody was trying really hard to get it right, but nobody knew how," said Nancy Sharrock, the Executive Director of AmeriCorps Oklahoma.
Recovery spokesman Ed Pound said this was a case of stimulus recipients misreporting their congressional districts and Recovery officials not having the time to check every report. Recovery spokesman Ed Pound said this was a case of stimulus recipients misreporting their congressional districts and Recovery officials not having the time to check every report.

By Alex Cameron, The Oklahoma Impact Team

UNDATED -- Since Recovery.org started reporting the number of jobs created and saved by stimulus spending, there have been many inaccuracies in job numbers reported, and that's creating confusion. There are examples of false reports in Oklahoma, but not all of the reports are so black and white.

On the stimulus reporting web site, the Oklahoma Community Service Commission, better known as AmeriCorps, received two grants totaling $431,000 dollars.

One of the grants, for $352,000, is placing 38 AmeriCorps members at non-profits like the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma, and 29 have been placed so far.

"Very often AmeriCorps members are young. They come in, they bring energy, enthusiasm, fresh ideas," said Jennifer Gooden with the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma.

And they come in with a commitment, generally, to work for one year.

"They receive an education award when they complete their service terms, and while they're serving, through the year, they receive a small living allowance," said Amy Roff with AmeriCorps Oklahoma.

The allowance is the equivalent of just under $12,000 a year, and AmeriCorps members admit that's not much.

"You know, you have to live modestly, but that was the idea," said AmeriCorps member Suma Ananthaswamy.

Neither Suma Ananthaswamy nor Joe Hudson is doing this for the money, but is it accurate to count what they're doing as a full-time job?

"I do feel like this is full-time, because I know that I'm working eight to five, and for me it sure feels like it," said Joe Hudson.

AmeriCorps' other grant is for $78,600 in matching funds. That fund is creating 29 jobs.

Nancy Sharrock, the Executive Director of AmeriCorps Oklahoma, said low-paying as they may be, the jobs are real, but how they should be reported, she said, is less clear.

"All in all, it was very confusing, and the federal agency was really confused about it, too. Everybody was trying really hard to get it right, but nobody knew how," Sharrock said.

"Frankly, I think that this whole effort to put numbers to the recovery plan is essentially a government-funded propaganda effort," said U.S. Representative Tom Cole.

Congressman Cole's criticism of the stimulus only intensified last week when phantom congressional districts were discovered on the recovery Web site.

"Look, when you've got imaginary jobs in make-believe congressional districts as a justification for $787 billion of expenditure, I think you've got a lot of explaining to do," Cole said.

Recovery spokesman Ed Pound said this was a case of stimulus recipients misreporting their congressional districts and Recovery officials not having the time to check every report.

"There were many, many errors corrected in this first quarter of reporting, obviously not all errors were corrected," Pound said.

"You know, that's classic shifting of the blame to somebody else. The reality is, it's not very hard to know that there's not nine congressional districts in Oklahoma," Cole said.

But Pound said the mistake is being corrected and in no way jeopardizes any stimulus dollars.

"It has no impact at all on our ability to monitor and review the spending under this program, or for the public to find out where the money is going," said the recovery spokesman.

But clearly not every stimulus job is the same, while $431,000 may yield 67 AmeriCorps jobs, $8.7 million yields just 10 jobs at the OU Medical Center.

The Topix forum is an opportunity for website users to share their opinions. The comments do not reflect the opinions held by the Oklahoma Impact Team, The News On 6, or NEWS 9. We reserve the right to remove any posting or comment.
  • NewsOn6.com Poll

  • Do you think jobs created or saved is a good measure of the stimulus package?

  • Thank you for participating in our poll. Here are the results so far:

    Yes
    41%
    9 votes
    No
    59%
    13 votes
  • IThinkOklahoma.com
Powered by WorldNow
News On 6
303 N. Boston Ave.
Tulsa, OK 74103
TULSA'S OWN TM
GREEN COUNTRY'S OWN TM
Oklahoma's Own Newson6.com is proud to provide Oklahomans with timely and relevant news and information, sharing the stories, pictures and loves of Oklahomans across our great state including Tulsa's Own and Green Country's Own.
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014, WorldNow and KOTV. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.