Obama Plan Would Aid 2-Year Colleges

The $450 billion plan that President Obama unveiled Thursday night to try to stimulate job growth and the economy would provide $5 billion in funds to build and renovate facilities and other infrastructure at community colleges and tribal colleges.

Details about the proposal were sparse as of last night; the president’s combative speech to a joint session of Congress did not even mention the funds, but a White House fact sheet said that the money for the institutions would bolster "their infrastructure in this time of need while ensuring their ability to serve future generations of students and communities."

Education Secretary Arne Duncan also mentioned the money in a blog post, saying that it and another $25 billion in facilities funds for public schools would "put hundreds of thousands of construction workers, engineers, boiler repairmen, and electrical workers back to work rebuilding and modernizing our aging public schools and community colleges." An Education Department spokeswoman confirmed Thursday evening that the agency would administer the infrastructure program.

The facilities plan for community colleges was resonant of past Obama administration proposals that bit the dust.

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