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  • Writer's pictureJocelyn Thompson

June 24th, 2022

Welcome to the Friday Update from the Federal Funding Hub!

This message shares news and resources so that our region can make the most of the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) and other federal funding.

OMG NOFOs! Check out all 7 below.

News from MSP

  • Dakota County: Made possible by $250,000 in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding distributed to Dakota County and approved for use by the county’s Board of Commissioners, the Workforce Mobility Program at Dakota County Technical College and Inver Hills Community College will provide free tuition to Dakota County residents seeking training in key, high-demand industry sectors.

  • Hennepin County: More than 5 million pounds of food were distributed to more than 300,000 people, thanks to Hennepin County’s Food Insecurity project that launched during COVID-19. Using about $1.5 million in federal dollars supplied by the American Rescue Plan (ARPA), Hennepin County allocated a total of $2.75 million to 75 agencies to provide food to underserved or struggling communities.

  • Minneapolis: Minneapolis City Council approved a proposal to allocate $50,000 toward culturally specific communication programs for East African communities. The funding comes from the second phase of the American Rescue Plan, which was approved on May 26. Vendors will be government contractors responsible for taking city news and making it easily accessible to previously unreached East African residents.

  • Ramsey County: With federal relief dollars running dry, Ramsey County has been gradually shuttering a series of shelters set up during the pandemic to house the homeless. Now Gov. Tim Walz and Lt. Gov. Peggy Flanagan are proposing a $6 million emergency cash injection that could fund some 100 to 200 shelter beds through December, if not through the winter of 2023. The governor’s office will present the county’s $6 million request to the same bipartisan legislative committee that has reviewed and approved previous requests for federal funding from the American Rescue Plan Act.

  • Washington County: The Washington County Board of Commissioners amended the county’s 2021 Annual Action Plan for the HOME Investment Partnership Program American Rescue Plan June 21, to include American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds. After the grant request is prepared, it will be submitted to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

  • Wright County: To gather community input on the spending of ARPA funding Wright County conducted a survey. The participants in the 2021 Community Health Survey were asked, “As Wright County prioritizes support across communities with COVID-19 recovery funds, what areas of concern do you think we should address?”. The 684 comments received were analyzed and categorized into themes by Wright County Public Health staff. The results from this analysis and recommendations based on the feedback received were published in the ARP Fund Allocation Survey Report.

Minnesota News

  • Homeless Youth: The 25-room Hope Street facility is opening Wednesday as the largest emergency shelter for homeless youths in Minnesota, replacing beds at the century-old St. Joseph’s Home campus, located about three miles away. Catholic Charities bought the new building with $5 million in American Rescue Plan funding from the city of Minneapolis and Hennepin County.

  • EDA: U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo announced the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $3.1 million grant to the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe, Onamia, Minnesota, to construct a new Tribal business incubator to support entrepreneurs. This grant is funded by the American Rescue Plan's Indigenous Communities program.

  • Health Insurance: Three of Minnesota's biggest health plans in the market where individuals buy coverage are seeking premium increases for next year — though less than what they sought for 2022. The state's MNsure exchange, where people use federal tax credits to buy policies, estimates about 70,000 people in Minnesota next year will pay more for their coverage without the extension of current subsidies provided under the federal American Rescue Plan Act.

National News

  • Metro comparison: The U.S. economy saw a faster recovery from the pandemic than almost anyone anticipated. Are America’s largest metro economies finally back on their feet? Alan Berube and Eli Byerly Duke examine data from the Metro Recovery Index to show where the recovery has been stronger and weaker.

  • Safety dollars: The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act that President Biden signed last year will increase funding for the safety program to $15.6 billion over a five-year period, compared to $11.5 billion under the last major transportation funding law. However, traffic deaths are soaring over the last two years, some federal officials are questioning why nearly half of state transportation departments have diverted money from Washington specifically designated to making highways safer.

  • EDA: The Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $2.6 million grant to the National Association of Counties (NACo) to lead a coal-focused Community of Practice called the Building Resilient Economies in Coal Communities Initiative. This grant is funded by the American Rescue Plan.

  • Infrastructure: The National League of Cities’ analysis of local leaders’ speeches finds renewed interest in maintenance and construction projects and worries about how they will handle billions in new federal dollars.

  • Unemployment Systems: The federal government has to contribute to upgrading the system that the Government Accountability Office deemed a poorly performing government program. It will take state investments as well as federal money to renovate the unemployment insurance system.

  • The White House: As the nation marks Juneteenth, the Administration has delivered real and lasting change and continues to work each day to deliver equitable outcomes and opportunity for Black Americans. By signing into law the historic American Rescue Plan (ARP) and Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and implementing robust regulatory reform, President Biden has led the most equitable economic recovery on record, and helped create new economic opportunities for Black Americans and made long overdue investments in Black communities.

  • A First: The White House on Tuesday announced President Joe Biden's intent to appoint Marilynn "Lynn" Malerba as his administration establishes an Office of Tribal and Native Affairs at the Treasury Department. Yellen was set to visit the Rosebud Indian Reservation in South Dakota on Tuesday, the first time a Treasury secretary has visited a tribal nation. She is expected to focus on how the American Rescue Plan has affected tribal communities.


IIJA News

  • Firefighters:

    • Wildfires: During a visit to the National Interagency Fire Center (NIFC) today, Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland announced the allocation of $103 million in fiscal year 2022 for wildfire risk reduction efforts throughout the country from President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and the establishment of an interagency wildland firefighter health and wellbeing program.

    • Pay Raises of Up to $20,000 Annually for Federal Firefighters: President Biden on Tuesday announced another round of pay increases for federal firefighters, as well as a framework to improve compensation, recruitment and retention on a more permanent basis. The pay increases, authorized as part of the bipartisan infrastructure law ,will be retroactive to October 2021.

  • Water Power: About $1 billion from the BIL will fund water power projects, including: Hydropower, including significant investments in maintaining and strengthening the current hydropower fleet, which already provides 37% of the country’s renewable electricity generation along with jobs for tens of thousands of Americans. Marine energy, an emerging industry that could generate clean energy from waves, tides, and river and ocean currents to power remote and island communities and blue economy applications such as ocean observation technology or desalination and water treatment devices

  • Transportation Bill: A House panel on June 23 approved legislation that would fund operations at the U.S. Department of Transportation for fiscal 2023. With approval in the transportation appropriations subcommittee, the bill advanced to the House Appropriations Committee. Programs related to climate change and electric vehicles, some of which were approved by the $1 trillion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) would be backed by the appropriations bill.

Upcoming Funding Deadlines







Upcoming Webinars


Other Resources

  • Building for Success: How Counties can leverage Federal Funds for Workforce Housing: Watch the recording from the June 23rd session to learn new strategies and ideas from fellow county leaders, top research organizations, and NACo staff that can help you leverage federal funds to support your county’s workforce through housing. Watch the recording here.

  • 7 City Interventions for Rethinking Inclusive Pandemic Recovery: The pandemic and other forces have accelerated disruptive dynamics and furthered racial inequities, and against a backdrop of generations of structural racism, low-income neighborhoods now face a series of super-sized challenges that radically affect their current and future states. Outlined are seven interventions, along with cities engaged in the work, and are highlighted here.

  • EV Funds: Watch the archived webinar about how Minnesotans can help shape the MN State EV Infrastructure Deployment Plan, and how access to EVs can grow throughout Greater MN as a result. Expert presenters will also cover other IIJA opportunities for Minnesota: Billions in competitive grants are on the table for states for additional EV charging station grants including disadvantaged communities, tribal, and rural areas. Watch the webinar here.


Have a great weekend, all!

Allison

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