Proposals include extending and perhaps expanding a popular tax credit for first-time home buyers, and creating a new credit for companies that add jobs. Taken together, the proposals look a lot like another economic stimulus package, though congressional leaders don't want to call it that.
The program is scheduled to run for 11 months this year and cost a projected $6.6 billion. Extending or expanding the program would add to the costs.
Lawmakers are also working on proposals to award tax credits to companies that add jobs. Obama's economic team proposed a similar incentive during negotiations over the stimulus package enacted in February but the idea was abandoned amid questions over its implementation.
A proposal by Sen. Arlen Specter, D-Pa., would provide a $4,000 tax credit, to be paid out over two years, for each new employee. His office could not provide a cost estimate.
Pelosi said lawmakers need to hear from economists before settling on a package to create jobs. "What is it that we can afford? What works the fastest?" Pelosi said.
Rep. Dave Camp, R-Mich., the top Republican on the Ways and Means Committee, said: "The fact that they're putting forward all of these things is really an indication that the stimulus was a failure. It didn't work."
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