Federal COVID-19 relief for Kansas cities announced

Jonathan Riley
Morning Sun

PITTSBURG, Kan. — Gov. Laura Kelly’s office on Wednesday released a list of allocations for local governments throughout the state of federal relief money being provided through the Local Fiscal Recovery Fund (LFRF) of the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). 

“The American Rescue Plan Act will provide critical resources to Kansas communities as we continue our recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic,” Kelly said in a press release. “We must use these dollars to make the strategic investments that will build a better, more inclusive and resilient economy for future Kansans.” 

In southeast Kansas, Pittsburg is eligible to receive more than $3 million — $3,041,717.44 to be exact — which is a higher amount than any city in several surrounding counties, because of Pittsburg’s higher population (20,050 per the state’s calculations) compared to other area cities.  

Fort Scott, with a population of 7,697, will receive $1,167,685.74. Parsons, with a population of 9,477, is eligible for $1,437,723.50. Chanute, with a population of 9,042, will receive $1,371,731.13. Coffeyville, with a population of 9,275, is eligible to receive $1,407,078.77. 

Besides Pittsburg, in Crawford County, Arcadia is eligible for $46,877.34, Arma is eligible to receive $215,423.38, Cherokee will receive $107,408.28, Frontenac will receive $513,981.98, Girard will receive $405,208.34, Hepler is eligible to receive $19,873.57, McCune is eligible for $62,503.12, Mulberry will receive $79,039.14 and Walnut is eligible for $34,437.40. 

“All NEUs receiving funding must certify with the State that they wish to receive their allocation of funds,” according to the release. “Any NEU eligible for funding can affirmatively take a step to decline their award and reallocate to the State Fiscal Recovery Fund. Instructions for certification with the state will be sent to NEUs directly.”  

The release notes that the aid to Kansas municipalities is “[i]n addition to the 105 Kansas counties and 10 metropolitan cities across the State receiving funding from the U.S. Department of Treasury,” and that the cities with populations under 50,000 that are receiving funding are designated as “Non-Entitlement Units of Government (NEUs).” 

“The US Department of Treasury’s eligibility requirements specify that NEU’s must have operational capacity and provide a ‘broad range of services that would constitute eligible uses under ARPA.’ Given this requirement, townships will not receive direct funding from the state under the LFRF,” the release notes.  

“Although townships won’t receive direct allocations from the Local Fiscal Recovery Fund, I will make a recommendation to the SPARK committee that interested communities be eligible for resources from the State Fiscal Recovery Fund,” Kelly said.