BOSTON, MA (STL.News) The Baker-Polito Administration announced a total of $109 million in discretionary funding from the federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) will be distributed today to Chelsea, Everett, Methuen and Randolph. These four communities were amongst the hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, but due to shortcomings in the federal ARPA funding formula, were set to receive disproportionately smaller amounts of federal funding compared to other hard-hit communities.
“Our Administration committed additional funds to Chelsea, Everett, Methuen and Randolph to ensure all of the Commonwealth’s communities received the funding they deserved from the federal relief package,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “These four communities were disproportionately impacted by the virus, and this additional funding will support critical local COVID response and recovery efforts.”
“As the Commonwealth’s economy reopens, this funding will allow the four communities to make investments to recover from the pandemic,” said Lt. Governor Karyn Polito. “Our Administration was pleased to work directly with local officials in these communities to deliver this funding.”
The following amounts will be distributed to the communities today:
- Chelsea $28.5 million
- Everett $33.3 million
- Methuen $26.3 million
- Randolph $21 million
ARPA allocated direct aid to some municipalities based on the federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program formula, while assistance to other communities was allocated on a per-capita basis. The use of these two different allocation formulas created disparities in distributions among cities and towns, and Chelsea, Everett, Methuen and Randolph are the four designated hardest hit communities with disproportionately smaller levels of federal funding compared to other hardest hit communities. The Administration worked closely with key state and local stakeholders to determine the extent of the necessary additional resources given federal funding levels and local needs.
These four municipalities will be able to use this funding to support costs related to the COVID-19 pandemic, including direct response efforts, addressing negative economic impacts, replacing revenue lost during the pandemic, making investments in water, sewer, and broadband infrastructure, as well as other eligible expenditures.