State and Federal Relations

Federal Relief Funds Can Ensure Equitable Recovery for Small Businesses

Government officials can leverage federal dollars to help locally owned companies that were impacted by the pandemic, including those owned by women and minorities, a panel said Thursday at Route Fifty’s Future Cities event.

White House Says CDC Eviction Ban Will Expire Saturday

President Biden said he would have supported an extension of the moratorium but the administration was bound by a U.S. Supreme Court ruling.

Senate Lawmakers Reach Agreement on Infrastructure Package

The proposal has cleared a key procedural vote, which will allow it to advance.

Students and Staff Should Mask Up in Schools, CDC Recommends

The CDC revised mask wearing guidance on Tuesday to help contain the spread of Covid-19. But nine states ban school districts from enacting mask mandates.

Community Colleges Begin Using Federal Coronavirus Funding to Erase Student Debt

The money, from the CARES Act and the American Rescue Plan Act, is available for students who have struggled financially as a result of the pandemic.

Federal Court Lifts CDC Cruise Ship Restrictions

The order reverses an earlier decision that allowed the restrictions to remain in place. The ruling affects only ships sailing in and out of Florida.

States, Localities Distributing Rental Aid at a Quicker Pace

Emergency rental assistance programs have distributed about $3 billion since January, but that accounts for just 6% of the overall aid approved by Congress.

Infrastructure Proposal Faces Key Vote Wednesday

Sen. Chuck Schumer scheduled a procedural vote on the bipartisan infrastructure framework even as lawmakers scurry to finish a draft of the legislation.

How Localities and States Can Prepare for Broadband Expansion

Governments can use American Rescue Plan Act funding to pay for broadband infrastructure. Experts say local governments are in the best position to know what initiatives will work to connect residents.

Judge Declines to Block ARPA Tax Cut Mandate Before Case is Heard

At least six lawsuits are challenging the legality of a provision included in the American Rescue Plan Act that prevents states from using federal relief funds to offset tax cuts.

Judge Blocks Maryland from Cutting Federal Unemployment

Twenty-six states plan to stop providing supplemental $300-a-week unemployment payments before the program ends in September. Jobless workers in five states have challenged the decisions.

Colorado Becomes Fourth State to Give Residents Control of Their Online Data

The Colorado Privacy Act allows residents to opt out of data collection and gain access to more insight about how their information is collected and used.

Pandemic Growth Led This State to Slash Taxes, Issue Rebates

Tax policy experts and state officials believe Idaho’s rapid economic growth will offset the tax cuts, making them feasible under federal funding rules.  

How One State Plans to Use Federal Relief Money to Shore Up Child Care Options

Montana will leverage more than $31 million to establish grants for child care centers to increase pay, expand capacity and offset tuition rates.

Financing Plan for Infrastructure Agreement Called into Question

Finance experts say the plan to pay for the infrastructure proposal, in part by clawing back unspent Covid relief funds, is unlikely to cover the full cost.

How Governments Can Leverage Federal Funds to Partner With Local Nonprofits

The American Rescue Plan allows states and localities to funnel federal relief dollars to nonprofit organizations, which the National Council of Nonprofits says could be key to local economic recovery.

This Week in Federal Funding

In the June 29 edition we give an update on the Treasury Department guidance for the American Rescue Plan Act aid to states and localities.

Bipartisan Infrastructure Plan, Supported by State and Local Governments, Back on Track

President’s Biden walked back comments that he would not sign an infrastructure bill without a second Democrat-backed proposal. That irked Republicans who threatened to derail the agreement.

Indiana Must Continue Federal Unemployment Payments, Judge Rules

The ruling is the latest development in a lawsuit over Gov. Eric Holcomb’s decision to prematurely curtail the state’s participation in the expanded benefits. More than two dozen states have made similar moves.

More than $20M in Federal Funds Available for State-Based Insurance Marketplaces to Make Improvements

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services funding will help improve access and update systems to reflect new eligibility thresholds, state officials said.