When Obama recently introduced his 2012 budget plan, it came with good news for community colleges and with important investments for the future. The new budget includes $69.8 billion for education investments, $8 billion of which would go to the Community College to Career Fund. The money would go toward developing community college and business relationships, which would, in turn, create internships and opportunities for community college students.
This would especially help low-income students and Americans who lost their jobs during the recession and need to return to community college to develop new skills. Of the budget’s education investment, $500 million would be for a grant program for community colleges that have earned it.
The new budget also invests in transportation and research, as well as increasing taxes for the highest-income-earning Americans. Obama plans to end the Bush tax cuts for Americans earning more than $250,000.
Obama’s new budget would help the economy grow in several ways by putting education, career training, higher taxes and transportation first. The budget comes with a $1.3 trillion deficit, which is a fairly high number to swallow, but it makes economic sense to run a deficit during a recession. Economic growth will lead to higher tax revenues, which will reduce our deficit without cuts to important services and investments.
Giving community colleges and job training more funding will help to match the workforce with the needs of the economy — it will help Americans find jobs. The new budget plan, taken as a whole, presents a bold vision of re-investment in America.