The Denver Post published a factchecking piece on the disparity between the number of jobs reported to have been created so far in the state by the American Recovery Act and the number of actual jobs created. Turns out the people reporting the jobs were confused and overinspired. Is a part-time job a job? Is a one-day job a job? Is a job in Atlanta created by a company headquartered in Denver a Colorado job?
A bonus to the story is the predictable comment thread, already at 8:00 a.m. a snaking trail of mockery that inspires less confidence than the government incompetence it targets.
The main story documents that 8,094 jobs were reported created but that the number is likely inflated by 1,000 jobs, “the result of confusing reporting requirements, inaccurate reporting and, perhaps, overreaching at some reporting agencies.”
The problem centers on the federal requirement that every government, nonprofit agency and company that got federal stimulus money calculate the equivalent of how many full-time jobs were saved or created as part of the reports they submitted online.
“It’s not really surprising that that’s happening,” said Craig Jennings, fiscal-policy analyst with OMB Watch, which is tracking stimulus spending. “It’s really impossible to determine if a job is a full-time job or a part-time job.”
In Colorado, 1,069 reports on stimulus spending and job estimates were posted on the Internet last week, crediting the state with 8,094 jobs from stimulus spending through the end of September. The problems found by The Post centered on reports submitted by smaller agencies or companies receiving one-time contracts.
“It appears these were mistakes made by local agencies who need some more help to understand how to do this,” said Myung Oak Kim [spokesperson for Gov. Bill Ritter’s recovery program].
The problem in part is human error, overreaching and the novelty of the program.
TeleTech spokesman Bob Livingston said the form that the company filled out allowed it to submit only one job figure, and since the company is based in Colorado, all the jobs were credited to the state.
Livingston said the 34 full-time-jobs figure for Colorado is “essentially correct.”
In the case of Westminster, the city was never told it had to submit job numbers based on full-time employees, said Vicky Bunsen, the city’s community-development-programs coordinator.
“It definitely doesn’t say full- time jobs,” Bunsen said. “When you do a construction project, you don’t create permanent full-time jobs.”
The $150,438 in stimulus money was combined with other funds to improve Lowell Boulevard near West 78th Avenue. Without it, city officials said, the $800,000 project would not have begun.
Bunsen said the city simply looked at how many people worked on the prior phase of the street work and submitted that figure to the government.
“One guy might come to work for eight hours, and that’s all that he does to touch that project. Somebody else might be out every day,” Bunsen said. “It’s a whole range.”
And the story of overreaching and human error continues in the comment thread:
Obama is the Messiah..he saved everyones job…get over it..or go to a re-education camp
The Obama Rein of Terror continues…
Obama Lies, the Economy dies, Unemployment continues to rise,
the wicked witch of the west Pelosi continues to fly.
Hope and Change you can believe in.
This is almost as good as reading the comics page. What makes this sad is that this is propagated by our government and those who wish to abuse the system and we are suppose to believe it.
Cost of living raises? HA! For the CEO’s more than likely. They must really think the average worker is that dim witted.
Its very sad that the 0bama administration has to lie (again) to achieve their desired goals.
What is even worse are the 0bama sheep that believe everything he says and will follow him to the end of a disaster. This is exactly what will happen with 0bamacare. Pelosi, 0bama, and Reid (POoR) will make all these promises and paint a rosy picture, and then it will be an enormous failure also. Sad
If the Post is trying to alienate its leftist readers and cause them to stop reading the paper, articles like this will get the job done. Right now many if not most such readers are asking why the Post is reporting pejorative facts about Dear Leader and his lies and scams, rather than covering them up in support of his Marxist agenda.
A good morning virtual tea party. Cheers!