‘Racial equity’ a ‘central tenet’ in dispersing American Rescue Plan funds at state, local level: US Treasury
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The U.S. Treasury has created a “central policy” to “advance ethnic equity” in deciding to spend billions of dollars on state and local aid from President Biden’s American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act of 2021.
After Biden signed the 1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package into law in March 2021, মার্কিন 350 billion was allocated for state and local assistance administered by the U.S. Treasury Department.
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Two months after the plan became law, the Treasury issued interim rules on how funds should be spent, saying it was “targeting relief” in low-income areas to address the unequal effects of the epidemic, which it argued was “aligned”. With Biden’s executive order to advance racial equity, which he signed after entering office.
That September, the Treasury released a report, “The American Rescue Plan: Centering Racial Equity in Policymaking.” The Treasury report states that it has “made the advancement of ethnic equity a central policy in deciding how these funds can be spent at the state and local levels” and “when state and local governments report on how they are available.” The Treasury will ask them to discuss how to increase their spending to improve accountability for this critical purpose. “
“The American Rescue Plan, and the Treasury’s vision for its implementation, has embodied racial equality as a top priority,” the report said. “We are already beginning to see progress on this front, from equity-centric investments by state and local governments to support tenants in the color community who can stay in their homes.”
In February of this year, the Treasury issued its “Guidelines for Recipient Consent and Reporting Responsibilities,” which requires “authority to describe efforts to promote equitable results, how programs were designed with equity in mind.”
An example of how these rules worked came from Baltimore, Maryland, which received $ 641 million in COVID-19 relief from the American Rescue Plan.
In September 2021, Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott’s Office of the Recovery Program released a fact sheet for organizations seeking relief funds, stipulating that all applicants must establish an “equity framework” for consideration.
“Equity should be a central principle of all proposed projects,” the document said. “Institutions should consolidate an equity framework for all projects from planning to implementation.”
A performance report released by the city the same month revealed that the proposals, which carry the maximum weight on a 100-point scoring rubric, would be evaluated against seven different criteria. According to the report, the equity is worth 20 points, while criteria such as “clearly defining the objectives of the project and the benefits of the outcome” and identifying and analyzing “public risk” are responsible for only 15 points.
“Equity is the scoring criterion with the highest weight among the seven criteria for evaluating proposals,” the report said. “All proposals must answer the question, ‘How will this project incorporate equity and move forward?'”
“All applications must include an equity impact assessment,” it continues, adding that “all applications must include a performance measurement plan, which specifies applicants to specify that data race, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, income.” , Whether it can be distinguished across religions. Affiliations, and other features. “
The city explains that its focus on ethnic and socio-economic equity is not only driven by Biden’s executive order and treasury rules, but also by the still structural and historical challenges facing the city. “
Shamia Carney, chief recovery officer and director of the Mayor’s Office of Recovery Program, cited the Treasury’s final rules on recovery funds, which were released in January, in response to Gadget Clock Digital.
The US Treasury Department explicitly states that the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) states and local financial recovery funds (SLFRF): ‘ensures that state, local and tribal governments have the resources needed to fight the epidemic, sustain it and strengthen the economy. Recovering, maintaining vital public services and investing in ways that support long-term growth, opportunity and equity, “Carney wrote.
It is no secret that COVID-19 public health urgency adversely affects the health and well-being of black and brown communities, and in line with federal guidelines, Mayor Scott has made it a clear priority to correct these discriminatory consequences by investing in targets. He wrote.
The US Treasury did not immediately return a request for comment from Gadget Clock Digital.
The American Rescue Plan Act, which Democrats passed without any Republican support, has come under intense scrutiny for its impact on the U.S. economy since inflation rose to 8.5% last month. Some economists, including a former economic adviser to the Obama administration, have blamed the 1.9 COVID-19 relief package for overheating the economy.
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