Monday, February 13, 2012
The Obama administration included $328 million for financially-strapped rural counties in its 2013 budget proposal.
The line item in the 2013 budget is more important in political terms than pure economics since the White House budget is unlikely to be adopted. However, the addition of money for county payments offers a black-and-white, on paper confirmation of the administration's priorities for the coming year. That will help Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., in his battle to secure funding when Congress writes its own budget and makes the hard decisions for how money will be spent.
Wyden is working with other lawmakers from Oregon - primarily in the House - on a two-step effort to provide economic stability to reeling rural counties. Wyden wants to extend county payments for at least another year while Reps. Peter DeFazio, Greg Walden and Kurt Schrader develop a new - and less costly - alternative.
Read more at OregonLive.com.