The President has signed the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act (EESA) of 2008. Last week it was passed in the House by a vote of 263 to 171, welcome news to the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC).

The package, which the Senate passed days earlier, includes the financial-market rescue provisions that the House rejected, plus an increase in FDIC insurance coverage to a maximum of $250,000. The Senate also extended numerous expiring business and energy tax provisions, kept the alternative minimum tax from increasing in 2009, and added disaster assistance.

"We have been calling on Congress to act in order to open up America's credit markets, protect small businesses, stave off job losses and feed money back into the economy," said Stephen E. Sandherr, chief executive officer of AGC. "In the last week, AGC members generated an unprecedented number of letters to their Senators and Representatives because Congressional inaction was affecting their businesses."

The package also includes AGC-supported tax provisions including extensions of the Production Tax Credit for Alternative Energy Investments and the Targeted Relief for Investments in Real and Personal Property.