Minnesota Department of Management and Budget’s (MMB)’s COVID-19 Response Accountability Office is waiting to hear from more than 200 Minnesota cities for their requests of funds allocated to them. The American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) provides automatic eligibility to cities that submit an application for the federal aid. This is a grant that the city does not need to repay, as long as funds are spent within program guidelines. Cities considering this funding opportunity are encouraged to apply now.
When ARPA funds will be distributed
Non-entitlement units of government (generally, those with populations less than 50,000) will receive aid of approximately $105.81 per capita. Distributions will be capped at 75% of the pre-pandemic city budget. Those cities that apply can expect to receive the funds in two distributions with the first half of the allocation coming this summer and the remaining half distributed in the summer of 2022. MMB is coordinating the distribution of funds that cities will receive as a direct deposit approximately two weeks after submitting the application.
How and when ARPA funds can be used
Funds can be used to respond to the public health emergency or its negative economic impacts, provide premium pay to eligible workers, replace lost revenue, or to make necessary investments in water, sewer, or broadband infrastructure. Additionally, funds can be transferred between jurisdictions or to nonprofit partners, within restrictions.
Cities may utilize ARPA funds for eligible expenditures incurred between March 3, 2021 and Dec. 31, 2024, with an automatic spending deadline extension to Dec. 31, 2026 for projects in progress at the end of 2024. The reporting requirement for this funding consists of filing an annual report by Oct. 31 of each year until all funds have been spent or the spending deadline has passed, whichever comes first.
How to apply for ARPA funds
The application process is quick and easy. Cities apply through the Minnesota COVID-19 Response Accountability Office and will need to provide a SWIFT ID (available via a link in the application), DUNS number, the name, title, phone, and email for two city contacts, and the 2020 budget (as of Jan. 27, 2020) to complete the request for ARPA funds. If your city did not adopt a budget in 2020, use annual expenditures for calendar year 2019. Please note: Cities under 50,000 in population had until October 11, 2021 to request funds from Minnesota Management and Budget.