Washington, D.C. – Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) today spoke on the Senate floor regarding the Treasury Department announcing their new program that will deliver aid to state and local governments under the American Rescue Plan. Below are Senator Schumer’s remarks which can also be viewed here:
Today, the Treasury Department launched a $350 billion program to deliver aid to state and local governments—funding that Democrats in Congress provided through the American Rescue Plan.
After fighting this pandemic on the frontlines, state and local governments in New York and across the country needed help, and they needed it quickly to keep frontline workers on the job and prevent brutal service cuts. Thanks to the American Rescue Plan and the Treasury Department’s announcement this morning, we can finally say that help is on the way to state and local governments.
Eligible state, territorial, city, county, and tribal governments will be able to access funding directly from the Treasury Department in the coming days. State and local governments now need to file applications with the Treasury. Once they are processed, money will begin flowing. Let me say that again: state, local, and tribal governments should prepare to file applications with the Treasury Department for assistance. And I am told the assistance will be swiftly forthcoming.
And State and local aid is not only available, it is also flexible.
The Biden Administration deserves credit for providing clear guidance and broad categories for spending the money—letting states make their own decisions about how to allocate funds to recover from the pandemic and address immediate needs. Whether it’s to support public health systems, small businesses, necessary infrastructure, hard-hit industries like tourism, or premium pay for essential workers: states can use the funding we passed in the American Rescue Plan to help their constituents and their economy recover in a variety of ways.
The Treasury Department’s announcement today begins the process of delivering the resources our states and municipalities need to prevent layoffs, keep essential services running, and boost Main Street businesses from one end of the country to the other.
I was proud to successfully push for robust state and local funding in the American Rescue Plan, and I will continue to work with the Biden administration as this funding is distributed.