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Posted on: March 8, 2022

Commissioners Approve Funding Categories for Portion of American Rescue Plan funds

SPOKANE COUNTY, Wash. – This afternoon, the Spokane County Board of Commissioners unanimously approved a resolution directing a portion of funds from the American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act to specific expenditure categories. 

Under the ARP, signed into law on March 11, 2021, $350 billion dollars in emergency funding was made available to state, local and Tribal governments through the Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds (SLFRF). Spokane County was notified it was eligible for $101,547,383 to continue investments for increased resiliency throughout Spokane County as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. To date, the County has received half of that allotment. 

The funds provided by the ARP may be used for a variety of purposes related to rebuilding and strengthening our communities so long as the funds are appropriated by December 31, 2024 and fully expended by December 31, 2026. ARP guidelines require the County to adopt a resolution affirming which categories the County intends to fund under the ARP rules prior to the allocation of funds.

The decision to allocate an estimated $43 Million in specific categories came after months of community outreach leading up to this vote. Community outreach included, but was not limited to: 

  • A community survey promoted through traditional and social media that was completed by over 1,500 members of the community.
  • Input from an assembly of the regional Council of Governments that featured participation from county and city elected leaders, business leaders, state leaders, and non-profits leaders.
  • An online specific project submission form for the public to submit proposals for ideas about ARP funding.
  • ARP public input meetings throughout the County.

The County’s initial funding allocations will be in specific eligible cost categories as set forth in the rules established by the U.S. Treasury issued as the SLFRF guidance and compliance recommendations: 

  • $2.7M for public health related expenses in the community
  • $4.5M for affordable housing programs
  • $5M for addressing educational disparities 
  • $750k for non-profits
  • $19M for infrastructure in water & sewer and broadband.  
  • $9.4M allocated for allowable revenue replacement impacts in the County’s general fund consistent with US Federal formula-based guidance. 
  • $2M for administrative costs to cover staffing, IT requirements and possible consultants to make sure all reporting and monitoring is done according to the 500+ pages of rules and guidelines that come with ARP over the next five years.

The survey and project proposal link remain on the Spokane County ARP website so the community can continue to share with the Commissioners their suggested priorities as there will be multiple rounds of appropriations until the end of 2024 or until all funds are expended. The survey links, requests for proposals for each of these categories, and eventually announcements about the awards will be posted on the county’s ARP website at:

www.spokanecounty.org/4895/American-Rescue-Plan

Signed Resolution Available Here.