The city of Kent will start receiving in the next month about $28.2 million in federal relief funds from the American Rescue Plan.
Congresswoman Kim Schrier, D-Wash., whose 8th District includes parts of Kent, announced May 12 that counties and towns in the district will be receiving the federal funds to help respond to the financial impacts of COVID-19. The city of Kent initially found out in March how much money it would be getting.
The American Rescue Plan provided $350 billion for qualifying states, counties, tribes and cities to help turn the tide of the pandemic and lay the economic foundation for recovery from the pandemic, according to Schrier’s news release. This week the U.S. Department of Treasury announced a process for local entities to request their allocation.
“I have heard from mayors across the 8th district that because of a drop in tax revenue this past year, they have been struggling economically and need these federal funds to keep educators and first responders employed, and be able to continue to provide critical services,” said Schrier, of Issaquah. “That’s why I was happy to vote for the American Rescue Plan, which will provide millions of dollars directly to our local communities to help them recover and keep businesses on main street open.”
The coronavirus state and local fiscal recovery funds provide flexibility for state and local governments to use funds for their specific needs. This includes support for families, small businesses, impacted industries and essential workers. These funds can also be used to make necessary investments in water, sewer and broadband infrastructure.
The city of Kent formed a committee of Mayor Dana Ralph, City Council members Bill Boyce and Satwinder Kaur, city Chief Administrative Officer Derek Matheson and city finance director Paula Painter to make recommendations later this year to the council about how to spend the federal money. Cities have until the end of 2024 to spend the funds in response to the pandemic.
Washington state stands to receive around $4.43 billion. An additional $442.8 million will be directed to Washington state to distribute to smaller towns that aren’t considered metropolitan cities, defined as towns with a population over 50,000. More detailed information about funding allocations to smaller towns in the 8th district will be announced in the coming days.
In addition to what the state will receive, counties and towns in the 8th District will receive the following amounts:
• King: $437.5 million
• Pierce: $175.7 million
• Kittitas: $9.3 million
• Chelan: $14.9 million
• Douglas: $8.4 million
• Auburn: $14.7 million
• East Wenatchee: $3.1 million
• Kent: $28.2 million
• Renton: $9.9 million
• Sammamish: $4.8 million
• Wenatchee: $6.4 million