CLEVELAND — On March 11, 2021, the American Rescue Plan Act or ARPA was signed into law to provide direct aid for every county in America, including Cuyahoga County.
According to Cuyahoga County's website, the funding will strengthen communities by maintaining county services and much needed relief in various areas.
Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish says the county received roughly $240 million dollars over the next two years. Budish tells 3News that a portion will go towards the revenue shortfall in the county and mitigating the pandemic.
However, county leaders are asking residents to submit ideas for ways in which to spend the remaining pot.
“Today I'm asking for your help,” said Budish. “This money is one-time money, we don't want to spend it in the next couple of years and have nothing and get back to where we were want to be putting the money in a position where we are moving forward.”
According to Cuyahoga County's website, here are the primary ways that ARPA funds can be spent:
1. Support public health response
- Fund COVID-19 mitigation efforts, medical expenses, behavioral healthcare, and certain public health and safety staff.
2. Address negative economic impacts
- Respond to economic harms to workers families, small businesses, nonprofits, and impacted industries.
- Re-hiring of public sector workers.
3. Replace public sector revenue loss
- Use funds to provide government services to the extent of the reduction in revenue experienced due to the pandemic.
4. Premium pay for essential workers
- Offer additional support to those who have and will bear the greatest health risks because of their service in critical infrastructure.
- Funds can be used retroactively back to January 27, 2020.
5. Water, sewer, and broadband infrastructure
- Make necessary investments to improve access to clean drinking water.
- Invest in wastewater and stormwater infrastructure.
- Provide unserved or underserved locations with new or expanded broadband access.
6. Ideas for transformative and lasting initiatives
You can submit your recommendations by clicking here:
You can watch Armond Budish's COVID-19 briefing from Wednesday in the player below: