American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA)
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The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA) became law on March 11, 2021 to provide $1.9 trillion in economic stimulus with the intent to speed up the United States' recovery from the economic and health effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. ARPA expands and builds on the $2.2 trillion Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES) from March 2020 and the $900 billion in stimulus relief included in the consolidated Appropriation Act, 2021 from December 2020.
Board of County Commissioners Approves ARPA Spending Plan Through 2024
(Sedgwick County, Kan.) - The Sedgwick County Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) approved a spending plan today for nearly $67 million from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). Close to $60 million of that will support ongoing efforts to help Sedgwick County and its residents recover from the COVID-19 pandemic and its devastating effects on our health and economy. Another $6.8 million will go into a contingency fund. This spending plan allocates ARPA funds from April 1, 2022 through Dec. 21, 2024. Some highlights of the decision:
- $15.7 million to the Sedgwick County Health Department for COVID-19 testing, vaccines, and outreach to boost vaccination rates and to be prepared in case of another COVID-19 surge.
- $15.7 million to the District Courts, District Attorney's Office, Sedgwick County Jail, and Department of Corrections to address a backlog of court cases and the ripple effects, due to courts closing for months during the pandemic.
- $5.2 million to the Sedgwick County jail to the install surveillance cameras to monitor unmanned pods for low-risk inmates, due to staffing challenges.
- $1.4 million to Recovery Connect, a community navigator program that connects families, businesses and non-profits with resources to help them recover from the negative impacts of COVID-19.
These items continue or expand recovery efforts started last year, when ARPA became law in March 2021 and awarded Sedgwick County just over $100 million in total. From that, the BOCC dedicated more than $33 million through the first quarter of 2022 to provide vital community services and free COVID-19 vaccinations and testing at multiple sites around Sedgwick County. Other recovery efforts funded by ARPA include:
- Additional pay around to reward and retain essential County employees who worked directly with the public during a COVID-19 health order.
- Increased COVID-19 related staffing and remote technology in multiple County departments.
- Plans to add four courtrooms and specialty criminal dockets to the Sedgwick County Courthouse to address a backlog of court cases, made worse by the pandemic.
- Work in progress to free up space in the Sedgwick County Courthouse by relocating administrative offices to the Ruffin building.
The BOCC determined the top recovery needs in Sedgwick County from research done by County staff, along with ARPA consultants for Sedgwick County. Commissioners then prioritized their uses of ARPA funding to benefit the highest number of Sedgwick County residents in the most impactful ways. By adding programs, personnel and services that are fully funded by ARPA, the BOCC assures residents they will not face higher taxes in the future to pay for these improvements.
ARPA funding builds upon earlier stimulus programs by the federal government, including the Coronavirus Aid, Relief & Economic Security Act (CARES). In April 2020, Sedgwick County received nearly $100 million from CARES and helped many local agencies, businesses, and municipalities respond to COVID:
- $15.5 million to 80 public health, social service agencies
- $14.8 million to 10 cities in Sedgwick County
- $14.3 million for COVID-19 related staffing
- $6.4 million to 1,302 businesses, non-profits
- $5 million to K-12 schools
- $4 million to support COVID-19 testing at WSU Molecular Diagnostic Lab
- $3.3 million for County Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
- $3.0 million for PPE kits for business, nonprofits
- $1.9 million for workforce development
- Internal Survey Report
- ARPA 2021 Spending Plan
- Revised Sedgwick County Recovery Plan Performance Report as of April 9, 2022
- ARPA External Needs Assessment Executive Summary
- ARPA 2022 1Q Spending Plan
- Sedgwick County Project and Expenditure Report as of December 31, 2021
- ARPA Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Fund (CSLFRF) Final Rule update and Letter of Interest Results
- ARPA 2022 2Q- 2024 Spending Plan
- ARPA 2022 Project and Expenditure Report