Constituent Services
House Approves Bipartisan Economic Stimulus Package
February 7, 2008

Legislation Will Put Hundreds of Dollars into the Hands of More Than 130 Million Families


Washington, D.C.- Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-27) today voted with his colleagues to approve and send to the White House an economic stimulus package to promote economic growth, inject confidence and consumer demand, and create approximately 500,000 jobs by the year’s end. The measure represents the original House economic stimulus bill, with 2 additions from the Senate: expanding recovery rebates to an additional 20 million seniors and 250,000 disabled veterans and clarifying that undocumented workers are prohibited from receiving rebates.


“I applaud the swift passage of this legislation that will jumpstart our slowing economy and assist hardworking Americans struggling with the high costs of gas, health care, and groceries,” Higgins said.


This broad based stimulus package will provide tax relief of up to $600 per individual and $1,200 per married couple, plus an additional $300 per child. The measure also provides $32 billion in tax relief for 35 million families who work but make too little to pay income taxes; families who otherwise would not have been included in this recovery effort. More than 19 million of these are families with children. Americans who earned at least $3,000 in 2007 will get at least $300 per single and $600 per couple, plus a child tax credit of $300 per child. Tax rebates that include low- and moderate-income families are 24 percent more effective as stimulus than rebates that leave these families out.


“This is unprecedented tax relief for working families,” Higgins added.


Economists estimate that each dollar of broad-based tax cuts leads to $1.26 in economic growth. Recovery rebate checks could be sent as early as mid-May, getting money to Americans who will spend it immediately to reinvigorate the economy. 


Additionally, this bill will help families avoid foreclosure by increasing affordable refinancing opportunities and liquidity in housing market.  For 2008, the bill increases the FHA loan limits up to $729,750, to expand affordable mortgage loan opportunities for families at risk of foreclosure through the Federal Housing Administration.  To enhance credit availability in the mortgage market, the measure includes an increase in the loan limits for single family homes from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac from $417,000 up to $729,750 that covers loans made between July 31, 2007, and December 31, 2008.

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