© 2023
Prairie Public NewsRoom
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

ND Senators want a stimulus package for soft economy

By Tracy Fugere

Fargo, ND – North Dakota Senator Byron Dorgan says our economy was a soft one going into the September eleventh attack.

Dorgan, along with Senator Kent Conrad, say a stimulus package needs to be enacted in the United States Congress.

Dorgan says there's two ways to lift the economy.

"One--some tax rebates to individuals as a credit against payroll taxes they have paid. That's an immediate way to get money in people's pockets. Individual tax cuts make good sense. A credit against payroll taxes paid tends to provide the biggest benefit to lower and middle income folks in this country and it'll do it immediately. Second--we also need to give businesses more incentive to invest. An investment tax credit and also accelerated depreciation or expensing will be a very important element to persuade new investments to be made at this time by small and medium sized businesses and others that have capital equipment needs. Both of these together can provide significant lift to this economy and we need it."

Senator Conrad says a stimulus package needs to be done quickly.

"We have called on our colleagues to pass a stimulus package in the next three weeks. We've also suggested that most of the impact should be felt within six months. And that the provisions ought to sunset within one year so that we're not causing additional pressure on interest rates over the long term. We have also indicated we believe whatever money is used for stimulus now ought to be paid back later on. So that we're not taking money from the trust funds of Social Security and Medicare to pay for a stimulus package now but not paying it back. So, we've made a committment. The budget leaders in the House and the Senate--that any stimulus package should be paid when good times return."

Both Senators agree that they would rather make the mistake of taking action than doing nothing during this important time.