FL: Economist says federal temp job programs only hurt workers

By Marianela Toledo and Yaël Ossowski | Florida Watchdog

MIAMI — Are direct government incentives for job creation the path to prosperity? Not a chance, says oneFlorida economist.

Jorge Salazar-Carrillo, professor of economics atFlorida International University in Miami, points to the misdirected aims of temporary jobs programs introduced en masse in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, signed into law by President Barack Obama in February 2009, the first month of his presidency.

“These programs are traditional macroeconomic policy in the United States,” said Carrillo told Florida Watchdog in a Spanish-language interview.

Many of the law’s jobs provisions seek to encourage economic recovery by implementing various benefit programs for small and medium-sized companies, including tax and direct hiring incentives.

One of the more active incentive programs is “On the Job Training.” The Recovery Act distributed $90 million among various states to implement the program, which simultaneously trains and employs under-skilled workers for specific industry work.

The state government pays the employer up to 90 percent of worker’s salary, while the worker undergoes “training” to obtain skills. Companies also receive tax incentives up to $1,000 for each new hire.

Read more: Florida Watchdog.org

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