Who is a member?
Our members are the local governments of Massachusetts and their elected and appointed leadership.
Working with information from the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and the National League of Cities, the MMA is providing estimates for direct aid that municipalities could receive from the American Rescue Plan, which was signed by President Joe Biden yesterday.
The $1.9 trillion federal aid package creates new state and local coronavirus relief funds, with $220 billion going to states, tribal governments and territories, and $130 billion going directly to municipal and county governments.
The MMA analysis concludes that Massachusetts cities and towns would receive more than $2 billion in direct aid.
In Massachusetts, 37 “Metropolitan Cities” (generally communities with populations above 50,000) will receive about $1.7 billion distributed through a modified Community Development Block Grant formula, and all other communities will receive approximately $368 million distributed on a per-capita basis. Counties will receive about $1.3 billion, also distributed on a per-capita basis, and a majority of this aid will flow to cities and towns.
Where county governments have been abolished (Berkshire, Essex, Franklin, Hampden, Hampshire, Middlesex, Suffolk and Worcester), the law will keep the aid in the state by distributing the money to the cities and towns in the county based on the municipalities’ percentage of the county population, and communities may use the funds to supplement their direct aid.
Municipal leaders from communities with functioning county governments (Barnstable, Bristol, Dukes, Nantucket, Norfolk, and Plymouth) will need to work with their county officials to make sure the funds are available for local government priorities.
Funds may be used to replace revenue lost or reduced as a result of the pandemic, fund COVID-related costs, provide support to aid households and businesses impacted by the crisis, invest in economic recovery and renewal, and fund investments in water, sewer and broadband infrastructure. The funds will be provided in two blocks, in 2021 and 2022, and will be available for use through 2024.
The Treasury Department will provide specific guidance on allowable uses of the funds and will determine final allocations based on the most recent census data and the final language in the law.