McKee to discuss how federal stimulus funds should be used in RI


PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Gov. Dan McKee is expected to highlight his plans on how federal stimulus funds should be used in Rhode Island Monday afternoon.

McKee will be joined by small business owners at his 1 p.m. briefing at the Patio on Main in East Greenwich.

According to McKee’s office, Rhode Island is the only state in the Northeast that hasn’t spent a dollar of the fiscal recovery funds provided through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA).

ARPA was passed by Congress and signed on March 11, signaling a distribution of funds to states across the country.

Rhode Island is set to receive $1.8 billion over two years to support state and local fiscal recovery from the pandemic. Any projects funded by this money must be completed by the end of 2026.

McKee suggests a portion of the windfall, about 10%, to be spent to help small businesses and other hard-hit industries. He outlined his plan in a Providence Journal op-ed, calling for the funds to be used as a “down payment on Rhode island’s economic comeback.”

Target 12 Investigative Reporter Ted Nesi pointed out in his weekly column, Nesi’s Notes, the Senate Finance Chairman is calling for McKee to send lawmakers a formal proposal for ARPA plan spending to have his ideas considered.

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