SACRAMENTO COUNTY, Calif. (KTXL) — Sacramento County is asking residents, businesses and organizations to fill out a survey as they decide where to allocate federal funds meant for COVID-19 relief.
The American Rescue Plan Act signed by President Joe Biden back in March would provide Sacramento County with $301.4 million meant to address COVID-19’s impacts on public health, the local economy and infrastructure. The first half of the money was provided in May.
The hundreds of millions in federal relief will be available to cover costs from March 3, 2021 through December 24, 2024.
Sacramento County’s Community Needs Survey opened Tuesday, and can be filled out by residents and businesses through June 30.
It asks respondents to choose from eight major issue areas that can be covered by ARPA funds. Specifically, people may chose the “most applicable COVID-19 related issue area(s)” of broadband, infrastructure, health, education, economic response, homelessness, housing and essential workers. “Other” is also an option.
The survey then asks community members how they think the county can address the issues.
Community members can watch a virtual Zoom presentation on federal COVID-19 funding for Sacramento County and the survey on Thursday at 4 p.m.
Survey results will be presented to the Sacramento County Board of Supervisors this summer.
“Once priorities and Board guidance is set, County leadership will develop a comprehensive plan for use of the funds,” Tuesday’s release reads. “This will include an open competitive process, where the County will launch a solicitation of proposals for any external use of funds. The process will follow County guidelines with stipulations in place for necessary documentation tracked for reimbursement purposes in compliance with U.S. Treasury Guidelines.”
At the end of last year, the Board of Supervisors faced criticism from community members and local advocates after their decision to appropriate millions in Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act funding to the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office.
At the time, Supervisor Sue Frost told FOX40 the intension was to make the county’s budget go further and assure that any CARES Act money that went to public safety would come back to the county’s general fund.
“The sheriff’s and probation are not making any more money, it’s an equal swap,” Frost explained last December. “And if it wasn’t for that equal swap, we would lose the money and that would be money next year that they could have had that they didn’t have. It’s the only way we can keep from losing that CARES Act money.”
Click or tap here to take the Community Needs Survey and learn more about Thursday’s virtual presentation.