The same people who projected the $1.75 Trillion Dollar deficit that is now topping $2 Trillion, shovel ready stimulus projects that weren’t weren’t shovel ready, and promised unemployment would not pass 8.4% are now suspending the cash for clunkers program because they underestimated its popularity. According to the LA Times:
The government plans to suspend its popular “cash for clunkers” program amid concerns it could quickly use up the $1 billion in rebates for new car purchases, congressional officials said Thursday.
The Transportation Department called lawmakers’ offices to alert them to the decision to suspend the program at midnight Friday. The program offers owners of old cars and trucks $3,500 or $4,500 toward a new, more fuel-efficient vehicle.
The congressional officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly. Rae Tyson, a spokesman for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which administers the program, declined comment.
Congress last month approved the Car Allowance Rebate System program, known as CARS, to boost auto sales and remove some inefficient cars and trucks from the roads. The program kicked off last Friday and was heavily publicized by car companies and auto dealers.
Through late Wednesday, 22,782 vehicles had been purchased through the program and nearly $96 million had been spent. But dealers raised concerns about large backlogs in the processing of the deals in the government system, prompting the suspension.
A survey of 2,000 dealers by the National Automobile Dealers Association found about 25,000 deals had not yet approved by NHTSA, or nearly 13 trades per store. It raised concerns that with about 23,000 dealers taking part in the program, auto dealers may already have surpassed the 250,000 vehicle sales funded by the $1 billion program.
“There’s a significant backlog of ‘cash for clunkers’ deals that make us question how much funding is still available in the program,” said Bailey Wood, a spokesman for the dealers association.
Next up for these amazing forecasters, is a takeover the nation’s heath care and energy industries. I am sure that they will do just as fine a job on those projects as they have on previous estimates.