Corporate Welfare responsible for 125% of new jobs

A new study and press conference today by the Pennsylvania Economic Development Association (PEDA) takes credit for helping to “create” 186,000 jobs in PA from 2003 through 2006 through economic development grants (or “corporate welfare”). Note that, like the state Opportunity Grant Program, these jobs “created” are self reported by the agencies themselves.

Surprisingly, BLS Data indicates that from Dec. 2002 to Dec. 2006, Pennsylvania added only 148,000 jobs – thus PEDA agencies “created” 40,000 more jobs than the entire state added.

Of course this raises dual questions – How many jobs would have been added if not for corporate welfare and the taxes necessary to pay for it, and is PEDA really taking credit for keeping economic growth well below the national average?