ICYMI: BROAD SUPPORT FOR STATE/LOCAL AID FOR ESSENTIAL WORKERS IN THE AMERICAN RESCUE PLAN

There is resounding support for the state and local aid in the American Rescue Plan as the bill heads back to the House of Representatives. After a year of depleted revenues and rising costs, state and local governments face budget shortfalls of $300 billion, a figure that doesn’t include additional pandemic-related costs like PPE, testing and tracing, and food assistance programs.

State and local officials from both parties have expressed their support for the American Rescue Plan’s $350 billion in state and local aid to keep essential workers on the job, support vaccination efforts, and to open schools safely.

Voters support providing aid for state and local governments by a +43 point margin, according to polling released by Invest in America and Data For Progress.

  • 69% of likely voters, including 64% of Independents and 53% of Republicans, support including aid to state and local governments in the Covid relief package

  • When provided with a breakdown of the components of state and local aid such as support for essential and frontline workers, emergency responders, and vaccine distribution, support grows to 85%, including 83% of Independents and 78% of Republicans. 

Wisconsin State Treasurer Sarah Godlewski laid out the case for state and local aid in a recent oped for The Appeal: 

“This bipartisan call from state and local officials for federal help isn’t just limited to my home state. Republican mayors in Miami, Oklahoma City, and Fort Worth, Texas, are calling for help, as are Republican governors like Larry Hogan in Maryland and Jim Justice in West Virginia.

The reason is simple. Budget shortfalls have already forced cuts of more than 1.4 million critical public service workers. The prospect of fewer firefighters, fewer teachers, and fewer police officers in our cities, counties, and towns is real.

A year ago, the CARES Act was instrumental in preventing an even greater disaster. Now, with hope on the horizon, more help is needed to vaccinate our people and help local economies recover from this emergency.

Failure to invest in local communities will hurt public health, hinder vaccination efforts, and hurt state economies for years to come.”

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