By Silla Brush - 04/05/10 08:18 PM EDT
Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) is calling an Obama administration program to help state and local governments issue debt a bailout for California and New York.
The Build America Bonds program was part of the $862-billion fiscal stimulus program passed by Congress early in 2009. The Treasury Department said Friday that state and local governments have saved $12 billion on the cost of issuing debt under the program. Government authorities have issued $90 billion of debt under the program since April 2009.
According to The Hill's analysis of Treasury Department data, seven of the top 10 bond deals were done by California authorities. New York has issued nearly $10 billion of debt under the program.
"Taxpayers from the rest of the country are bailing out California and New York under the Build America Bonds program, which offers state aid in the form of fat checks from the Treasury Department just for issuing Build America Bonds," Grassley said in a statement.