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Stimulus package becomes bill Tuesday

President Barack Obama will sign the stimulus bill into law today.

Despite worthy opposition to the package, it still is needed, especially for already depressed areas, such as Alabama’s Black Belt.

U.S. Rep. Artur Davis made that clear as he spoke of the advantages of the stimulus package to a group of workers and managers from Weyerhauser at the Alabama-Tombigbee Regional Commission building in Camden.

Those workers will benefit from the unemployment benefits extended by the stimulus bill. They will not have to pay the total price of keeping their health insurance going under a COBRA plan. Instead, they’ll pay 35 percent and the government will pick up 65 percent of the costs.

Additionally, Davis pointed out the projects undertaken by state and local governments under the stimulus plan will provide jobs for many individuals, who have found themselves out of work or on furlough.

We appreciate Sen. Richard Shelby’s concerns made in his remarks at a breakfast in Selma on Monday. He believes the stimulus bill will provide little immediate economic relief at the risk of raising the national debt.

But at the same time, he said he would work hard to ensure the state and the region has representation.

Projects that need funding, such as our infrastructure in here Selma and Dallas County, will need the help of both senators and Davis.