Hillsborough County Considers How, Where to Spend American Rescue Plan Act Funds
The American Rescue Plan Act signed into law by President Biden on March 11 provides $1.9 trillion in economic relief and recovery assistance in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Hillsborough County's allocation from the Coronavirus State and Local Recovery Fund established by the Act is $285,912,528. The County received half of its allocation in May and will receive an equal amount in May 2022. The U.S. Treasury requires all the funds be spent by Dec. 31, 2024.
The County's plan for use of the funds will align with goals set out by the federal government. The American Rescue Plan Act provides direct economic support for individuals and families, hard-hit industries, and vulnerable residents. That includes rent, mortgage, and utility assistance for low-income households, food and nutrition assistance, and more resources to address the COVID-19 public health emergency such as funding for testing and vaccines.
The allocation also may support grants for childcare unemployment assistance. There will be a third round of direct stimulus payments, additional help for small businesses affected by the pandemic, and more.
Funds may help offset increased government expenditures, recover lost revenues, and mitigate the pandemic's negative economic effects.
County staffers are developing a detailed plan for investment of the American Rescue Plan Act funds and expect to present their proposal to the Board of County Commissioners at its regular meeting on Wednesday, Sept. 1. These principals are serving as a framework:
- Avoid duplicating support available through other funding sources.
- Partner with local municipalities, nonprofit groups, and the private sector when appropriate to meet plan objectives.
- Select investments with a broad community impact while prioritizing underserved and vulnerable communities.
- Strive not to create or operate temporary programs.
- Avoid investments with recurring operating impacts.
- Apply sound and transparent financial management practices.
- Minimize administrative efforts while recovering staff costs as necessary.