The Kansas Meadowlark looks at a recent claim, one with no reported facts to support it, from Gov. Sebelius, Lt. Gov. Mark Parkinson, and KDOT officials.
“Brian Wilson reported that Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) explained that $365 million in debt-stimulus would support 10,000 jobs in Maryland. Wilson showed that the average highway construction worker makes about $32,000 a year. 10,000 jobs * $32,000 = $320 million, or 87.7% of the total, leaving only 12.3% for construction materials, like concrete, asphalt, steel.”
“Wilson investigated where the 10,000 job number came from. Wilson could find no hard evidence for the 10,000 figure, and the one source he found had a huge disclaimer. Watch the “Crunching the Numbers” video.
Wilson asked an economist if the job numbers could be believed. Economist Peter Morici said the numbers were “absolutely inaccurate” and are a “gross exaggeration.”
Today, Kansas announced $377 million in highway projects that would provide 10,000 to 11,000 jobs. Wilson’s job math seems to beg similar questions in Kansas, and whether there really are 10,000 jobs here.”
The Meadowlark concludes:
“Using Brian Wilson’s job math, yearly salaries for 10,000 to 11,000 highway jobs would cost about $320 million to $352 million. This would mean that 84.9% to 93.4% of the total cost for these highway construction jobs would be salaries, leaving only 6.6% to 15.1% to buy concrete, asphalt, steel, and all the other materials to build the roads and bridges.”