You: This economic stimulus – what’s in it for me?
There’s something for everyone (almost) in the economic stimulus package. But it probably isn’t much.
You: Well, what is it?
Starting in several weeks, you’ll get about 13 extra bucks in your weekly paycheck (probably.)
You: Just thirteen bucks? Didn’t the stimulus cost nearly a trillion dollars?
Yes and yes.
You: Okay then. Thirteen bucks. For how long?
For the rest of the year.
You: Then what happens?
Your stimulus gets reduced to nine dollars a week.
You: Is this a joke?
You: Something meant to evoke laughter through humor.
Intentionally evoke laughter or unintentionally cause laughter?
You: Intentionally evoke.
You: Jeez. What else will I get from the stimulus?
You: On what? On how I spend my $13?
No. It depends on whether you’re unemployed, needing health insurance as a result, looking to buy a home, or other specific conditions. Here are the highlights of what you may receive.
You: In addition to my thirteen bucks.
The first $2,400 of unemployment benefits you receive during 2009 will not be taxable.
You: What if I’m not unemployed?
Then this is not relevant to you.
If you lose your job between Sept 1, 2008 and December 31, 2009 and want to keep your health insurance, you can select COBRA and the government will chip in 65% of the cost. You pay the remaining 35%.
You: What if my insurance is really expensive and I don’t lose my job?
Then this doesn’t apply to you.
You: What if I hate my job and quit?
You: What it I currently have to pay more than 35% of the premium as an employee?
Then try to appreciate the irony.
People on Social Security or Who are Disabled
Many of those collecting Social Security or who are disabled will receive a one-time $250 check.
You: I suppose if I’m not disabled or on Social Security,
Car Buyer Tax Deduction
If you buy a new car before the end of this year, you can deduct the sales taxes you pay on the new car purchase even if you take the standard deduction.
You: What if I’m more practical and buy a slightly used car?
You: What if my state has no sales tax?
You: What if I buy a bicycle instead?
You’ll get better exercise but still no tax break.
First Time Home Buyer Tax Credit
The existing first time home buyer tax credit has been overhauled. The 2009 version of the first time home buyer tax credit was the subject of a recent post.
You: What if I already own my home?
Tell a friend.
You: That I bought a house too soon to qualify for the credit?
No. That your friend could still take advantage of the creidt.
You: Why would I want to do that?
Because you’re trying to be a nice person.
There are also some education-related spending and tax breaks for transit accounts.
You: I graduated school a fair bit ago. What’s the deal with the transit accounts?
You can spend up to $230 a month pre-tax for public transportation you take to work.
You: But I drive to work and my spouse works from home.
Then you get nothing.
You: Except the $13.
You: Michael, you know, this conversation wasn’t very, how should I say . .. .
You: That’s the word.
Tags: economic stimulus