Watch Your Stimulus Dollars Work | Recovery.gov Relaunches

Site had been criticized for being “out of date”

Your stimulus dollars at work, as recounted by the new Recovery.gov (Photo: flickr.com)

Your stimulus dollars at work, as recounted by the new Recovery.gov (Photo: flickr.com)

Is America’s economic engine running without knocks and pings yet? I would suggest that we are far from being out of the woods yet, despite pockets of stability. However, those who are ready to exclaim “mission accomplished” will most likely credit the Obama administration economic stimulus packages as the jolt that jumpstarted a nation. For the believers in the congregation, there is a Web site called Recovery.gov. Its purpose has been to track just how those stimulus dollars are being spent.

Yet Recovery.gov has had its own knocks and pings

According to numerous sources, Recovery.gov was nearly written off by many as yet another example of a government promise that failed to deliver. Critics levied charges that the information was either out-of-date or contradictory to other published information. People are looking to payday loans with no faxing to stimulate their budget between paychecks; they don’t want their government to mismanage their tax funds.

Recovery.gov has relaunched

Responding to this criticism may be a significant reason why Recovery.gov has relaunched. The Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board told the New York Times that the site relaunched today (Monday, September 28, 2009). Recovery Board chair Earl Devaney has said that the new and improved Recovery.gov “will be very interactive and user-friendly and will allow the public to find detailed information on projects in their states, congressional districts, and even in their own neighborhoods.”

Think you see some shady deals?

The Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board has also made a toll-free phone number available for taxpayers who suspect that stimulus funds are being used in a fraudulent manner. That number – (877) FWA-DESK gives us all a chance to be the watcher who watches the watchmen. Just think “Fraud, Waste and Abuse,” suggests the Recovery Board: F-W-A.

$787 billion in stimulus | Can Recovery.gov track it all?

That is a question that remains to be seen, despite the fact that Recovery.gov originally launched back in February 2009. However, Devaney defends the work that’s been done on the Web site. “We put up the most complex database of government spending, ever, in five or six months,” he told the Pittsburgh Tribune. “Normally, that would take a couple of years.”

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He makes a valid point, as there’s quite a lot of data to track across the board. Payday loans with no faxing are easy to follow from origination to delivery and repayment, but you’re only dealing with one person at a time, rather than multiple infusions made into scores of national agencies. Obviously, a stimulus database will take time before its close to perfect. I just hope that President Obama’s promise of transparency will indeed be a promise fulfilled.

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