Friday, 31 July 2009 11:37

Cash For Clunkers II---Another Two Billion

The House mobilized in less than 24 hours on July 31, with the Obama administration's help, to draft, introduce, and pass a bill on the last day before they break for the usual August recess. House members formerly opposed to the plan, fell in line due to the huge popularity of the program among dealers and consumers.

The House voted 316-109 to approve the transfer of $2 billion in emergency funding from the $787 billion economic-stimulus plan to the "Cash for Clunkers" program, ensuring it has sufficient funds to continue. The bill, which goes to the Senate next week, would transfer the new money from a U.S. loan-guarantee program for renewable energy systems that was funded under the stimulus package earlier this year.

At a news conference July 31, President Obama praised lawmakers for moving quickly to rescue the popular program, which he said has succeeded beyond expectations.

News broke the night of July 30 that the $1 billion allocated to the program was spent after just 6 days. The National Auto Dealers Association said it was given "specific assurances" by the Obama administration that all deals secured on July 31 will be honored, though the NADA's chairman reiterated concerns that some dealers might not be reimbursed for rebates extended to customer.

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