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Tuesday, July 27, 2021

State Opens ARPA Funding Application Portal to Eliglble Local Governments

In March, Congress passed the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), which seeks to mitigate some of the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic by providing stimulus payments to individuals and creating state and local fiscal recovery programs, among other relief. Through this federal program, over $742 million has been allocated to Illinois for distribution to cities, towns, and villages. This week, Governor Pritzker announced that the distribution of these funds is imminent, pending applications from eligible units of local government which seek to take advantage of the recovery funds.

Local governments with fewer than 50,000 residents that have not yet received any ARPA aid are eligible to apply for the available funds—in Illinois, there are just over 1,250 eligible units of local government. To apply for funding, authorized community representatives may access a portal administered by the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity and must submit certain required documentation. The deadline to apply for funding is September 30, 2021, and payments are expected to be distributed in two installments; the first in the coming months and the second approximately one year from the first payment. Local government officials who are unsure whether their communities qualify for these funds can check their eligibility and their expected allotment here.

The ARPA funds can be used to offset costs and losses associated with the pandemic, including negative impacts on small businesses and to support essential workers and portions of the community that have been especially vulnerable to the harmful effects of the coronavirus. Eligible local governments can also use the funds to invest in necessary infrastructure improvements to water and sewer services, as well as broadband utility access. Local government officials are encouraged to consult with their colleagues and attorneys as they prepare their applications and work to utilize the ARPA funds efficiently and equitably.

Post Authored by Erin Monforti and Julie Tappendorf, Ancel Glink


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