PORTLAND -- Cumberland County Government has launched a public website for residents to track County use of American Rescue Plan Act funds, submit suggestions for use of the federal funds, and register to speak at an upcoming public hearing on June 23.
In March of 2021, President Biden signed into law the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), the federal government’s fourth law in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The ARPA included funds paid directly to state and local governments in order to aid community and government recovery, and support households, employees, and businesses that continue to struggle with the effects of the pandemic.
Cumberland County was issued $57.3 million, to be paid in two installments. The first payment arrived in May, 2021. The second installment is due to arrive no sooner than May, 2022. All funds must be obligated by December 31, 2024; funds must be finally spent by December 31. 2026.
In order to identify the unique needs of residents and businesses as the Cumberland County Commissioners work to determine the best use of ARPA funds, the County is launching a campaign to collect feedback from the public, from industry experts, and from local elected officials. The County has launched a new web page dedicated ARPA education materials, tracking of fund use and a dedicated space to submit public comments.
Cumberland County will also hold a public hearing online, on Wednesday, June 23, beginning at 7 p.m. The meeting will take place on Zoom, and live-streamed on the County’s YouTube page. The purpose of the hearing is for members of the public and interested parties to offer comments on regional needs that ARPA funds may be able to address.
Residents may register to speak at the public hearing on June 23 at the County’s new ARPA web page. Visitors can also learn more about the allowable use of funds, track County spending, and submit public comments. Public comments will be accepted as long as ARPA funds are available.
Cumberland County urges residents and interested parties to review the allowable uses for ARPA funds and submit comments at the new ARPA page of their website: https://www.cumberlandcounty.org/ARPA
Interested participants can sign up to speak at the public hearing until 3 p.m. on Wednesday, January 23. Further instructions to attend or view the public hearing will be shared in advance of June 23.