The massive measure will also provide Medicaid assistance to the states and reduce state budget shortfalls to continue healthcare coverage to vulnerable New Yorkers.
“We can’t stand by and do nothing while pink slips are given to the men and women who educate our children or keep our communities safe,” the president said as he signed the measure into law.
In addition to helping teachers facing layoffs, the new law will also save the jobs of police officers and firefighters, Congressmember Carolyn Maloney pointed out.
“Having well-trained cops on the beat and skilled teachers in the classrooms is vital to the safety and success of our community,” stated Congressmember Joseph Crowley (D–Queens/The Bronx).
Crowley said that the “fiscally responsible” bill will be paid for by closing tax loopholes that reward corporations shipping jobs overseas. It also will reduce the federal deficit by an estimated $1.4 billion over 10 years, Crowley added.
The Education Jobs and Medicaid Assistance Act will provide $10 billion to save and create 300,000 jobs nationwide and $16.1 billion in Medicaid assistance, Maloney (D–Queens/Manhattan) said. The legislation will deliver more than $600 million to New York state “to save the jobs of an estimated 8,200 New York teachers and $2.2 billion for Medicaid”.
The lawmaker added: “The legislation is critical to help avoid additional state and local layoffs in New York and across the country.”
Maloney explained: “In analyzing employment data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics for 2010, we found a disturbing trend of accelerating job losses for those who are the backbone of our communities— teachers, firefighters and police.
“With the start of the new school year just a few weeks away, the House has acted in the nick of time, sending this legislation over to the president.”
Republicans attacked the bill as wasteful and just another bailout. Congressmember John Boehner of Ohio, the Republican leader, stated: “We do not have the money to bail out the states. It is time for them to get their arms around their problems and not look to Washington to bail them out.”