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The original item was published from 4/21/2020 2:11:57 PM to 4/22/2020 12:00:01 AM.

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Posted on: April 21, 2020

[ARCHIVED] Coronavirus Community Relief Act Update

Thanks to the efforts of Bridgeton Mayor Al Kelly and Hopewell Borough (Mercer) Mayor Paul Anzano, Congressman Jeff Van Drew and Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman have become cosponsors of legislation that would provide direct assistance to every municipality in New Jersey. 

Please, reach out to your Federal Representative today. Municipalities in all of New Jersey 12 Congressional Districts have needs that must be addressed. Make sure your Congressperson is standing up for you, your essential employees, and your citizens and taxpayers.

H.R. 6467, the ‘Coronavirus Community Relief Act’ (CCRA), will allocate $250 Billion in emergency funding to communities with populations under 500,000. Those communities, which include every New Jersey municipality, were excluded from direct stabilization aid in the ‘Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act’ (the CARES Act).

We thank Representatives Van Drew and Watson Coleman, who join New Jersey Representatives Tom Malinowski, Josh Gottheimer, Mikie Sherrill, and Albio Sires in clearly demonstrating their commitment to providing relief to localities all around our State. We also thank Senator Cory Booker for sponsoring companion legislation in the United States Senate.

The bill would divide the $250 Billion among the States, based on each State’s share of total national population. It would, then, subdivide each State’s share among all units of local government, also proportionally, based on population. Any funds that cannot be used, for the purposes set forth in the act by an individual local government, could be transferred to another local government. The CCRA funding could be used to address extraordinary local costs, incurred in response to COVID-19. These costs would include deploying timely public service announcements to keep your citizens informed, rapidly activating emergency operations, readying employees for telework to keep services running, and more. 

On Sunday, New Jersey’s Senior Senator Bob Menendez and Louisiana Senator (and Doctor) Bill Cassidy announced legislation that could help some, but not all New Jersey local governments. It would create a $500 billion fund to help states and larger local governments respond to the current public health and economic crisis while maintaining essential services. The bipartisan State and Municipal Aid for Recovery and Transition (SMART) Fund would expand eligibility to include counties and towns with populations of 50,000 or greater—the current threshold is 500,000. It would increase flexibility for states and local governments to use the funds to plug revenue losses due to the COVID-19 outbreak and targets additional funding toward coronavirus hot zones to combat the pandemic head-on.

Please reach out to your Representative today. Urge them to co-sponsor H.R. 6467, the CCRA. And please, let us know how they respond.

Contact: Jon Moran, Senior Legislative Analyst, jmoran@njlm.org, 609-695-3481 x121.




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