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“It’s possible that the data collection is a worthwhile endeavor, though making an immediate connection to stimulating the economy by spending the money in this manner seems difficult here,” Mr. Sepp said.

He said online government spending reports showing no jobs created raise additional questions.

“It just goes to show that even with gains made in database and reporting capacity, there’s still a great deal more that taxpayers need to know about government grants and contracts,” Mr. Sepp said.

“And when they see zero under the entry of jobs created, they have every right to ask hard questions about spending that was touted as a way to bring or preserve employment opportunities for millions.”