President Barack Obama’s economic stimulus act allocated $10 million to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) for a program that traced guns sold to straw purchasers, an operation that was designed to prevent Mexican criminal organizations from obtaining U.S. guns.
The $787-billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, the stimulus, was passed by Congress and signed into law in February 2009. From this near-trillion dollar trove, the administration allocated $10 million to the ATF’s “Project Gunrunner” to increase staff by 37 persons, according to a November 2010 Department of Justice Inspector General report.
The phased-in hiring of stimulus-funded staff was almost complete by September 2010, according to the IG report.
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