and almost all of the money looks set to go to anywhere and everywhere but individual Fukushima residents.
Yomiuri Shinbun (10/2/2011) reports:
Minister of Recovery and Reconstruction Hirano met with Governor Yuhei Sato on October 2 at the Fukushima prefectural government and told the governor that the national government will allocate 500 billion yen (US$6.5 billion) to the recovery effort in Fukushima Prefecture in the 3rd supplementary budget of the national government for the 2011 fiscal year. Of 500 billion yen, 350 billion yen will go to the special fund that the Fukushima prefectural government will set up in order to revive the local economy.
However, Minister Hirano said "This (amount of the special fund) is just a start. We will continue our effort", meaning the national government may add to the fund as necessary.
The fund can be used regardless of fiscal years. Fukushima Prefecture had strongly demanded the financial support from the national government for its "special fund for dealing with the nuclear accident and for the recovery". The national government and the Fukushima prefectural government will use this fund to build medical centers and R&D centers for medical equipments that are of international standard.
The remaining 150 billion yen will be used by the national government to financially help small businesses and agricultural, forestry and fishery businesses, to build R&D centers for renewable energy, and to deal with the "baseless rumor" damages [suffered by businesses in Fukushima Prefecture].
Financial help will be in the form of loans to businesses.
Fukushima Medical University, where Dr. Shunichi "It's so safe that children can play outside in nuclear fallout" Yamashita resides, wants 100 billion yen (link is in Japanese) to build a world-class hospital to treat cancer.
And Iitate-mura, where the Ministry of Education belatedly admitted to the existence of plutonium (and others to come), wants over 300 billion yen just for the village for the "decontamination" work.
The fiscal 2011 budget of the Fukushima prefectural government is about 903billion yen. Adding the supplementary budgets, the total tally for this fiscal year so far is about 1.43 trillion yen. This injection of 500 billion yen from the national government, which is likely to be open-ended, represents more than one-third of the entire budget for Fukushima.
Governor Sato must be very pleased. Who needs nuke plants when free money to the tune of 500 billion yen and counting is heading his way?
(It sure looks to me like the best opportunity for the Japanese government to finally create "inflation" that it has been so ardently craving for the past 20 years, by simply printing money.)