State could get $1B-plus from federal package

JACKSON — Mississippi could receive more than $1 billion in bailout aid if Congress approves the national economic stimulus proposal.

For Mississippi, the plan includes $637 million in state budget aid, $353 million for highways and bridges and $249 million for school modernization, according to information from congressional staff.

The Democrat-controlled U.S. House approved the $819 billion stimulus bill, which includes tax breaks and $550 billion in spending, on Wednesday. A separate Senate bill is expected to be considered later. Congressional leaders have said they plan to send a final compromise version of the stimulus package to President Barack Obama by mid-February.

Obama issued a written statement after Wednesday night’s vote in the House, in which no Republicans joined Democrats in support. He said, in his words, “what we can’t do is drag our feet or allow the same partisan differences to get in our way.”

Obama asked Congress to move “swiftly and boldly” to give the legislation final approval.

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