Running the Numbers, Stimulus Style

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You’ll forgive me for being a skeptic about job creation numbers. There’s a history there.

So, the GOV’s announcement that Stimulus Act Spending had “created or retained 23,533 jobs” caught my eye. Reading the press release more closely, I saw this qualification:

Stimulus spending has created or retained 8,792 full-time equivalents (FTEs), representing 23,533 individual citizens put to work.

If we take the $1.9b already spent by the state on stimulus and spread it across the number of FTEs, that comes to a subsidy of over $200k for each preserved or retained full-time job.

I don’t have a good frame of reference (and I’d be curious how other states are doing) but that strikes me as a pretty big number on a per full-time job basis.