The president stopped by a meeting of 49 state representatives gathered to discuss ARRA, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (aka "the stimulus bill") and got a big round of applause. But his aides were not treated so politely...
The White House called in a group of state representatives to discuss implementation of the stimulus bill — but several pool reports (see below
) paint a picture of anxiety and confusion.
"You're giving governors a lot of responsibility to administer it, but we're not always kept in the loop," a representative from New Hampshire told Obama senior adviser Valerie Jarrett.
Or take this exchange with Deputy Transportation Secretary Thomas Barrett (Another man asked how and why Maryland has already started transportation projects under stimulus, going back to the morning session's theme where some states are nervous they've missed opportunities to fund projects, or are behind the curve):
"They started using their own money," Barrett said.
"So we can do that?" the man said.
"If you have the money," Barrett said.
Then, following some back and forth...
"If there's confusion on it —" Barrett said, then was cut off by one of the state reps:
"There certainly is."
You get the idea. The full reports are worth a read and *bonus* there's a list of state representatives at the end of report #3.