Many people and businesses are still recovering from the far-reaching economic and health-related effects of the last year-and-a-half of the COVID pandemic.
A great number of small businesses in this country had no choice but to close their doors for good, and the ones that were able to hang on are still in recovery mode.
Enter the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), which was signed by President Joe Biden on March 11, 2021.
The American Rescue Plan will deliver $350 billion for eligible state, local, territorial and Tribal governments to respond to the COVID-19 emergency and bring back jobs.
Cities, towns and villages across America will receive $65.1 billion under the bill and $1.272 billion will be distributed to Missouri municipalities.
Municipalities in this state have a population under 50,000 will receive their ARPA payment from the State of Missouri. Missouri counties will be receiving an estimated $1.2 billion.
According to the Department of Treasury website, Johnson County will be receiving a total of $10,500,910.
Each town or city is allotted so much money from the ARPA, based on its population.
Holden will be getting $451,192.54, and it is believed to be coming in two separate “drops,” the first being in September.
The Recovery Act funds come with certain stipulations on what the money can be spent on.
According to the Department of the Treasury, COVID-19 Economic Relief may be used for the following:
*Assistance for American families and workers; *Assistance for small businesses; *Assistance for State, local and Tribal governments; *State and local fiscal Recovery Fund; *Coronavirus Relief Funds; *Assistance for American industry; *Coronavirus State and local fiscal Recovery Funds.
These funds will provide a substantial infusion of resources to help turn the tide on the pandemic, address its economic fallout, and lay the foundation for a strong and equitable recovery.
The Treasury is launching this much-needed relief to support urgent COVID-19 response efforts to continue to decrease spread of the virus and bring the pandemic under control.
Also to replace lost revenue for eligible state, local, territorial and Tribal governments to strengthen support for vital public services and help retain jobs.
And to support immediate economic stabilization for households and businesses.
The Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds provide substantial flexibility for each government to meet local needs – including support for households, small businesses, impacted industries, essential workers, and the communities hardest hit by the crisis.
These funds can also be used to make necessary investments in water, sewer, and broadband infrastructure.
The Image reached out to Mayor Liz Weeks to ask how the funds would be earmarked and split up in Holden and she said she is researching stipulations on what the funds can be used for and at that time she did not know how Holden would use the ARPA money.
A town the size of Holden would also be required to submit periodic reports to Treasury on their use of funds.
The COVID-19 public health crisis and resulting economic crisis have created a variety of challenges for families across the country, and changed the way we all live and work.
The Treasury Department is providing critical assistance to individuals and their families, ensuring people have the opportunity to keep their families safe and thriving, at work and at home.
According to the Missouri Budget Project website, these funds must be spent by December 31, 2024 and can be used to respond to the COVID pandemic or the resulting negative economic effects.
*Provide “premium pay” to essential public workers (up to a maximum premium of $13/hour or $25,000 per worker).
*Provide services (equivalent to the amount of revenue loss due to pandemic).
States may not use these funds to directly or indirectly reduce net tax revenue.
This restriction will remain in place from March 3, 2021 until a state spends all remaining funds.
If states violate this restriction, they must repay an equivalent amount of the federal aid.
Missouri’s state and local aid is projected to total more than $5.4 billion. So, while the nation is in recovery mode, we have much-needed federal dollars specifically to help towns like Holden heal from the devastation the pandemic has wrought.
We don’t know what the future holds for any of us, especially with the Delta variant running rampant in Missouri and elsewhere in the country.
Doctors report that more than 90 percent of those suffering from the new COVID uptick have not been vaccinated.
We could well see more federal monies headed our way if the pandemic takes a turn for the worse, as it appears to be doing.
Meanwhile, Holden will get the funds from ARPA and it remains to be seen how those funds will be used.
Stay tuned to the Image as we will continue to follow up on funds that are allotted to Holden and their use.