Here are some of the major features of the bill, which carries an overall cost of $789.5 billion.
- Reductions will total $282 billion, including payroll-tax credits of $400 for individuals and $800 for couples.
- About $70 billion has been earmarked to shield middle- and upper-income taxpayers from the alternative minimum tax.
- About $20 billion in renewable energy-tax incentives.
- Outlays will total $507 billion in spending including;
- $53.6 billion to help states avoid budget cuts.
- $87 billion to help states pay for Medicaid.
- $30 billion for a new power grid, battery technology and energy efficiency.
The legislation also would continue extended unemployment benefits through December 2009 and would increase food-stamp benefits by more than 13%.
What do you think?
[by Robert Schroeder, reporter for MarketWatch in Washington]