Greater Spokane Incorporated announces $1.7 billion in local investments - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Greater Spokane Incorporated announces $1.7 billion in local investments

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Garfield Elementary is receiving upgrades to its heating and air Garfield Elementary is receiving upgrades to its heating and air
SPOKANE, Wash. - Greater Spokane Incorporated held a news conference Thursday at Garfield Elementary School to announce local investments in the Spokane area totaling $1.7 billion.

The organization says in these tough economic times, the public may have a perception that economic activity has stalled and they want to show that's not the case.

Projects on the list include $325 million in upgrades to Spokane Schools, thanks to a recent bond passed by Spokane voters, $236 million for the Washington Department of Transportation and $175 million to Providence Health Care in the form of upgrades to Sacred Heart Medical Center.

Garfield Elementary was chosen as the venue because they are one of the recipients of the community's generosity. The school will see improvements in their heating and air conditioning system as well as new insulation and a new roof, all to be completed before the start of the next school year.

Dr. Nancy Stowell of Spokane Schools calls Thursday's announcement "bittersweet" in light of the recent teacher layoffs. She says bond money cannot go toward paying for teacher salaries.

Rich Hadley of Greater Spokane Incorporated says the impact of the $1.7 billion invested will feel more like $3.4 billion.

Most of the money for these projects flows from private, local and state funding. Hadley said, "In essence, this is the Spokane region's own stimulus program, and our neighbors are running the plan."

Projects on the list will either start, be in process, or be completed this year.


Washington state is administering the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act investments with an unprecedented level of transparency and accountability. Gregoire created a new Web site, www.recovery.wa.gov, so every Washingtonian can see where tax dollars are going and hold government accountable for the results. Visit the main American Recovery and Reinvestment Act here: http://www.recovery.gov/.

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