Relief funding totaling $350 billion will be distributed to state, territory, and tribal governments as well as to counties, metropolitan cities, and smaller cities and towns. The funds will be distributed as follows:
- $195.3 billion to states and Washington DC
- $20 billion for tribal governments
- $4.5 billion for US territories
- $65 billion to counties
- $45.5 billion to metropolitan cities
- $19.5 billion to smaller cities and towns
There is still much we do not know about the details of how these funds can be spent, though the American Rescue Plan put no deadline for use of the funds (covered expenses must be incurred prior to January 1, 2025) and outlined four expenses on which these governments are required to use this funding :
- To respond to the public health emergency with respect to COVID–19 or its negative economic impacts, including assistance to households, small businesses, and nonprofits, or aid to impacted industries such as tourism, travel, and hospitality;
- To respond to workers performing essential work during the COVID–19 public health emergency by providing premium pay to eligible workers of the government entity that are performing such essential work, or by providing grants to eligible employers that have eligible workers who perform essential work;
- For the provision of government services to the extent of the reduction in revenue of such government entity due to the COVID–19 public health emergency relative to revenues collected in the most recent full fiscal year of the government entity prior to the emergency; or
- To make necessary investments in water, sewer, or broadband infrastructure.
It is possible that this funding may be used for arts relief in Texas at the state, county, and municipal levels. The legislation contains language that incentivizes states to use the funds for aid to small businesses and nonprofits as well as hard-hit industries like tourism, hospitality, and travel, among other things, in order to receive all funding for which a state is eligible. Texans for the Arts will continue to monitor updates to this funding as it becomes available. We encourage our advocates to prepare to request relief from all levels of government in the coming months.