American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) Funding
The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA) was passed by the federal government to support communities across the country in responding to and recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic. Federal funds from ARPA are intended to address the negative health and economic impacts caused by the pandemic. Lexington is receiving $9,903,381 million in ARPA funding.
Use of Funds
ARPA funding is available for use until the end of 2024. The federal government has outlined the primary objective for the use of these funds, which are more flexible than the CARES Act funding or FEMA funding:
- Support urgent COVID-19 response efforts to continue to decrease spread of the virus and bring the pandemic under control
- Replace lost revenue for eligible state, local, territorial, and Tribal governments to strengthen support for vital public services and help retain jobs
- Support immediate economic stabilization for households and businesses
- Address systemic public health and economic challenges that have contributed to the unequal impact of the pandemic
View the US Treasury Department’s ARPA Reference Guide (PDF).
At their meeting on January 10, the Select Board approved using $1,190,000 of Lexington’s $9.9 million in ARPA funds in the following areas:
- Public health: $300,000 for:
- Ongoing support for the Public Health Office - $100,000
- Community Covid Testing Events for Lexington residents (7 events through February) - $175,000
- Purchasing of N95 masks - $25,000
- Affordable housing: $450,000 for:
- Design work on Vine Street - $115,000
- Down payment(s) on affordable housing units - $315,000
- Assist in the development of an affordable housing trust - $20,000
- Economic Development: $300,000 for:
- Local business grants for businesses that have been impacted by COVID - $250,000
- Arts and Cultural organizations that have been impacted by COVID - $50,000
- Learn more about the local business and arts and culture grant program
- Human Services: $140,000 for:
- Mental health clinician services - $90,000
- Food insecurity programs - $50,000
Moving forward, the Town Manager will be working with the Select Board to determine how the rest of the Town’s ARPA funds will be spent.
The Town has 3 calendar years to expend the funds and the programs already approved will be reviewed in the coming years to determine how to continue them and at what funding level.
Additionally, the Town Manager has proposed a $500,000 per year participatory budgeting component that would provide an opportunity for residents to weigh in on how a portion of the funds may be used.