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Jewish groups praise Obama’s jobs plan

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WASHINGTON (JTA) — U.S. Jewish groups praised aspects of President Obama’s jobs proposal.

"Congress should begin work on the President’s recommendations for improvements to our homes, schools, and roads without delay," the Jewish Council for Public Affairs, the public policy umbrella group, said in a statement after Obama delivered his proposals to Congress in a speech Sept. 8. "These projects will both revitalize our communities and put Americans back to work. Long-term recovery will require investments across varied industries and sectors. We appreciate the President’s endorsement of support to our teachers and health care providers."

The thrust of Obama’s proposals, which he promoted again Monday in a White House press appearance, are payroll tax cuts, tax breaks for businesses hiring veterans and public sector jobs creation.

The Republican-led U.S. House of Representatives has said it is examining the tax cuts but has resisted further spending.

The Jewish Federations of North America praised specifics in Obama’s plan that would promote job creation in the nonprofit sector, including cuts on payroll taxes and subsidies for hiring the longterm unemployed.

The National Council of Jewish Women praised Obama for his focus on infrastructure spending, and the Reform movement’s Religious Action Center singled out his appeal to extend unemployment insurance.

The Orthodox Union praised the White House for seeking to spur employment at nonprofits and including "equitable participation" of non-public schools in his modernization program.

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