American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA)
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):
1. How can funds assist in Child Care After Hours for shift work employees, such as, 911 Dispatchers/call takers, Fire/EMS, Law Enforcement and Corrections?
- Without additional details, blanket child care assistance for currently employed essential workers (as described below) does not appear to be eligible. However, one of the reasons for allowing premium pay under the ARP Act was to address the low pay of many essential workers who were less able to cope with the financial challenges of the pandemic, including lost work due to disruptions in child care. A local government could provide the maximum premium pay allowed under the Act to assist those essential shift workers who may also have child care needs.
- Childcare assistance programs to assist unemployed workers get back to work are an eligible use, however.
2. The Town of Cottage City is addressing youth mental illness issues by providing youth programs, such as the CCPD Police Explorer Post, After School Programs and Summer Youth Activities. Can some of the ARP funds be used to support these activities?
- To the extent that the mental health programs are new or expanded programs that are designed to meet the behavioral health needs exacerbated by the pandemic, the costs would be eligible based upon current guidance from US Treasury contained in the Interim Final Rule and FAQs as of June 17, 2021.
3. Can the funds be used to supplement income of those put off of federal unemployment supplements 7/3 instead of September?
- Unemployment Supplements – Yes. However, cash payments must be reasonably proportional to the negative economic impact on the individual. When considering the appropriate size of cash transfers, local governments should consider and take guidance from the per person amounts previously provided by the federal government in response to COVID-19. (Source: US Treasury FAQ, Q2.6 – June 17th, 2021 update)
* This represents the County’s interpretation of the various US Treasury guidance, Interim Final Rule, and FAQs as of June 17, 2021. The comments above do not constitute the County’s formal advice. Each city and town will have to make their own decision on eligible uses.
4. Can the County send out their average annual wage so we have that for our reference?
- Average salary is $77,210 and 150% is $115,815.