A state economic stimulus plan passed by the state Senate last week will invest significant dollars into economic recovery for Oregon workers.

Senate Bill 338 provides for over $175 million in deferred maintenance and capital construction authority, through bond sales, to take place in the next two months. These projects will create immediate employment opportunities for Oregonians in all 36 counties.

Big winners include local community colleges, many of which will see major upgrades. Projects range from increasing energy efficiency of college buildings to updating classroom facilities.

"The projects we approved funding for today will help Clatsop Community College and Tillamook Bay Community Colleges keep and create jobs," said Sen. Betsy Johnson, D-Scappoose. "I applaud these colleges for already using local vendors and providing family wage jobs. These projects will provide even greater opportunities for local workers."

By investing in smaller infrastructure upgrades, the Oregon Jobs Stimulus Plan will provide work opportunities for local contractors, many of which whom are unable to be competitive bidders for large capital construction projects. Focusing on deferred maintenance projects also has the added benefit of prolonging the life of state buildings. Two significant projects in Senate District 16 include:

? Up to $1.8 million to Clatsop Community College to update classrooms, replace roofs, and increase compliance with the Americans with Disabilities (ADA) Act.

? Allocation of a proposed $175,000 to Tillamook Community College for a major renovation of vocational space.

The bill will head to the House floor for a vote this week.

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