The City of Canby is in line to receive a sizable sum from the $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package passed by Congress earlier this month, which can be used to recoup costs associated with the local government’s response to the pandemic over the past year.
In addition to another round of stimulus payments, an extension of unemployment benefits and tax breaks to low- and moderate-income people, the American Rescue Plan Act allocated $130 billion to be divided among every city, town, village, and county in the United States.
According to estimates from the National League of Cities, which City Administrator Scott Archer shared with the City Council Wednesday night, Canby stands to receive something in the neighborhood of $3.66 million.
Because Canby’s population is less than 50,000, it will not receive a direct payment from the federal government. Instead, its share of ARPA funding will be passed through by the state, which can split the disbursements into two payments over the course of the next biennium if it chooses.
While specific guidelines have not yet been released, the short list of what cities can use ARPA funding for includes direct costs related to Covid-19 response, providing premium pay to essential workers, offsetting lost revenues to provide essential government services and water, sewer and broadband infrastructure.
Archer said more direction from the feds on how these funds can be used is expected in the near future.
“Details are still developing and we are continuing to track this closely to determine when these funds will be distributed, exactly how much Canby will receive, and how the funds may be utilized by cities,” Archer told The Canby Current Thursday.
The Canby Fire District, which — as the area’s emergency medical services provider — has been on the front lines of the pandemic since the very beginning, also plans to seek some reimbursement from the massive relief bill, the Current has learned.
“When it is available, we will be asking for funds to help with administering vaccines and [personal protective equipment],” Canby Fire Chief Jim Davis said. “We also are in need of machines for testing our firefighters’ N95 masks and self-contained breathing apparatus.”
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