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Millions in Stimulus for the Tri-Cities, but where did the money go?

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JOHNSON CITY, TN (WJHL) - Five years after the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act was signed into law, News Channel 11 is tracking the cash to find out where the money went here in the Tri-Cities Region.

$1,111,933 of the approximately $817 million dollars paid went to the City of Johnson City to buy new buses for the Johnson City Transit System, and passenger Don Sheets thinks it's money well spent.

"It's probably cheaper riding the bus than buying gas anymore," Sheets said.  "If it wasn't for the bus, I'd probably be walking."

The $1.1 million, though, is just a small piece of the stimulus pie that came to the City of Johnson City.

According to government records, The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act added $12.5 million to Johnson City's bank account.  

In the surrounding region, $4.5 million stimulus dollars with to the City of Kingsport, $1.1 million went to the City of Bristol, Tenn. and $793,306 went to the City of Bristol, Va.

In all, $498,123,354 went to Northeast Tennessee since February 2009.

Despite the fact his home district raked in the cash because of the stimulus bill, U. S. Rep. Phil Roe (R-1st District) has opposed and continues to oppose the Stimulus bill.

"Was spending the money now worth what we're going to have to do later, which is pay it back?" Roe said.

Monday at 6 p.m., News Channel 11 began a series of "You Paid For It" reports tracking the Stimulus cash in the Tri-Cities Region.

You can track stimulus cash in your community at www.recovery.gov .

Here's an interview about the series of reports on Daytime Tri-Cities.


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