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Senate and House of Representatives Agree on Stimulus Bill Compromise

This article was written by in Economy. 21 comments.

In the past few minutes, the conference including the Senate and the House of Representatives was concluded. They’ve come to a compromise between the two versions of the economic stimulus bill to be sent to the President of the United States to be signed into law.

I’ll post more details when the Congress provides them.

Update: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is not agreeing with the House and Senate’s compromise. The hold-up apparently concerns $10 billion added to the bill for the purpose of helping school infrastructure.

Update 2: A few more, but not many, details have been announced. The $15,000 tax credit for homebuyers, in the Senate’s bill, has been “significantly reduced.” The tax credit for those who purchase a car in 2009 is reduced from the version approved by the Senate. The compromise bill will also fix the alternative minimum tax to not affect as many middle-income earners. Another tax break, the working tax break that employees would see as a reduction of withholding, has been decreased from $500 to $400 for single taxpayers and from $1,000 to $800 for couples.

The bill will be written overnight, and will probably be available for full perusal tomorrow morning.

Update 3: The $15,000 credit was more than “significantly reduced,” it was eliminated, leaving the Houses’s version — an extension of the credit for first-time homebuyers. The House Rules Committee will establish how the revised bill will be debated and the House and Senate will probably debate the bill by the end of the week.

Update 4: The compromise bill increases the credit for first-time homebuyers from $7,500 to $8,000, but only if the house is purchased by the end of August 2009. This $8,000 tax credit would not need to be repaid, unlike the current $7,500 credit. The House and the Senate will vote on the latest incarnation of the bill on Friday, and I expect it will pass.

Update 5: The House and the Senate have approved the compromise bill, and it has now been sent to the President to sign into law. Read the complete stimulus bill here, and you’ll be a step ahead of many of the congressmen who didn’t have a chance to read it before voting.

Updated February 14, 2009 and originally published February 11, 2009.

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About the author

Luke Landes is the founder of Consumerism Commentary. He has been blogging and writing for the internet since 1995 and has been building online communities since 1991. Find out more about Luke Landes and follow him on Twitter. View all articles by .

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar 1 Anonymous

Looks like they’ve removed the $15k homebuyers credit.

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avatar 2 Luke Landes

Keith: Unless you have some inside info, I think it might be too early to say. They’ve released some details but not all.

Update: You may be right, Keith. atest report is that the $15k credit is “significantly reduced.”

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avatar 3 Anonymous

AAAAAAARGH! The one thing that could have probably stimulated this economy and fixed the whole option ARM debacle about to happen with resetting interest rates on those home loans. WE NEED BUYERS for homes and no one is going to buy if prices are dropping and the tax credit is not worth the risk. That’s okay, though, because I’m sure the politicians all got their pet projects in there. I hope it wasn’t dropped substantially, and that they have some common sense.

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avatar 4 Anonymous

I guess they have no background in history. If anyone cares to notice, the housing market is always what leads the economy in to a recession and the housing market leads the economy OUT of a recession.

Right now we have no money flowing and no liquidity. This is the ONE thing that would truly have had a stimulus on the economy within 30-45 days.

I look at some of the non-stimulating portions of this bill and have to wonder if our elected officials really want this economy to blossom again or if they want to drive it in to the ground in the name of power.

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avatar 5 Anonymous

I think some of you are giving house buying a little too much credit. Agreed that it is the number one INDICATOR of economic health, but it is not the end all be all.

Banks right now are sitting on money and not lending it. This affects housing, personal loans, but more importantly businesses. We have been living off the credit system for too long and now it’s coming to bite us.

Sustained, long term (read not shovel ready) actions are required to ride the wave. You can’t avoid recessions, you can only hope to shorten them.

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avatar 6 Anonymous

No longer Buying a home this year.

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avatar 7 Anonymous


The odds of me buying a home this year has definitely been “significantly reduced”.

If this is just an extension of the currant program, what a joke. A no interest loan where i cant combine with FTHB assistance. No thanks.

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avatar 8 Anonymous

Update 3 should read “leaving the House’s version” not the Senate’s. The Senate’s was the $15,000 option.

Also, it is yet to be seen if the new version is refundable or not, if not it is much less valuable.

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