Last month, the US Department of the Treasury announced that its help center, which assists counties with questions about eligible expenses and reporting requirements for the American Rescue Plan’s State and Local Fiscal Recovery Fund, will be drastically scaled back.
This scaleback is due to a shortfall in administrative funding for ARPA recovery programs that the National Association of Counties (NACo) has been closely monitoring since counties were alerted in September that the US Treasury would scale back recovery fund assistance. It is important to note that this shortfall does not impact any Recovery Funds counties received but will impact the types of services and assistance Treasury can provide counties as they continue to invest ARPA funds.
NACo urges Congress to pass S. 3011/HR 5735 in the next federal spending package, allowing Treasury to continue working with state and local governments to implement this historic investment.
According to NACo:
Since the enactment of ARPA, counties have been working tirelessly with Treasury to ensure Recovery Funds have the flexibility to properly address our unique needs and that we are fulfilling our role as sound financial stewards. Treasury has been a critical partner and valuable resource throughout the implementation of the Recovery Fund and with the recent release of LATCF payments, this partnership is as critical as ever.
The bipartisan State, Local, Tribal and Territorial Fiscal Recovery, Infrastructure and Disaster Relief Act (S. 3011/H.R. 5735), which passed the U.S. Senate by unanimous consent in October 2021 and is pending before the U.S. House, would unlock unobligated funds allocated to Treasury for administrative expenses related to operating the Recovery Fund and allow Treasury to continue to work with state and local government partners to implement this historic investment in America’s communities. Counties urge Congress to include S. 3011/H.R. 5735 in the next federal spending bill so we can continue this valuable partnership and spur long-term economic recovery and growth in our communities with this one-in-a-generation investment.