The Smithfield Town Council voted to accept $3.8 million in federal American Rescue Plan Act funds. Smithfield will receive half of the funds in July 2021 and the second in July 2022.
Council approval was required to accept the federal funding. The funds must be used to respond to the COVID public health emergency or its negative economic impacts, including assistance to households, small businesses and non-profits, or aid to impacted industries including tourism, travel and hospitality.
Funds can also be used to pay workers performing essential duties during the COVID pandemic. Money can also be earmarked for water, sewer or broadband infrastructure.
Town Manager Mike Scott said a decision on the allocation of the American Rescue Plan funds will be made at a later time by the town council.
The money must be allocated by December 2024 and spent by December 2026.
So our utilities bill went up to cover the cost of things but yet they get funding that can be used for the same thing?
The Cares Act was supposed to have money in it for workers who worked as essential jobs and so far I have not seen one person who got a dime and believe me I ask. Where does all this money go that our essential workers get nothing. We had folks working in nursing homes that were short handed. We had restaurant workers standing in the cold taking orders for food. We had teachers trying to learn new technologies so they could continue to teach. We had cashiers in grocery stores. Many others too numerous to mention. So far where is their money. When it is all gone they will still be waiting. They are never a priority.
It went into spending on pet projects. There are priorities but people are not that list.
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