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CCM establishes public-private advisory committee of business and community leaders to help Connecticut towns best administer groundbreaking American Rescue Plan funding

CCM establishes public-private advisory committee of business and community leaders to help Connecticut towns best administer groundbreaking American Rescue Plan funding

Source: Kevin Maloney, CCM

For immediate release
Kevin Maloney, 203-710-3486

The Connecticut Conference of Municipalities (CCM) today (Monday, April 26) announced the formation of a statewide advisory group that will provide municipal CEOs with an ongoing panel of public and private sector experts designed to best help Connecticut’s 169 local governments administer funding from the American Rescue Plan (ARP).

The Connecticut Council of Small Towns (COST) is partnering with CCM on this important initiative.

The funds are part of the $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief-stimulus package enacted by President Biden and Congress. “With the scale and depth of these unprecedented federal funds, CCM believes that establishing this ARP Advisory Committee to assist towns and cities will provide an even greater return on these federal funds for local government,” said Joe DeLong, CCM Executive Director and CEO.

The 10 members of CCM’s ARP Advisory Committee are:

  • Fred Carstensen, Professor of Finance and Economics, and Director, Connecticut Center for Economic Analysis, University of Connecticut
  • Gian-Carl Casa, President and CEO, Connecticut Community Nonprofit Alliance
  • Chris DiPentima, President and CEO, Connecticut Business & Industry Association
  • John Glascock, Professor of Real Estate and Finance, and Director, Center for Real Estate and Urban Studies, University of Connecticut
  • Gene Goddard, Chief Business Investment Officer, MetroHartford Alliance
  • Dale Graver, Regional Director, VC3
  • Eric Gjede, Vice President, Government Affairs, Connecticut Business & Industry Association
  • Courtney Hendricson, Vice President of Partnerships, AdvanceCT
  • Patrick McMahon, CEO, Connecticut Main Street Center
  • Brig Smith, City of Middletown General Counsel and President, Connecticut Association of Municipal Attorneys

The CCM advisory council members will work on a case-by-case basis with CCM member municipalities to analyze and recommend the use of ARP funds, such as: identifying eligible projects and project planning; achieving efficiencies and savings in service delivery; leveraging the funding to generate future revenue; and ensuring clear and timely reporting on expenditures and outcomes.

“There is no doubt that this committee will help ensure the most effective and efficient use of these historic federal funds for the benefit of Connecticut towns and cities and their property taxpayers,” DeLong noted.

ARP funding to Connecticut municipalities is very substantial: towns and cities are anticipated to receive $2.55 billion statewide ($1.56 billion to general government / $995 million to schools). Funding for towns and cities will be distributed in a modified CDBG formula with entitlement cities (those with a population over 50,000) receiving funding directly from the Treasury Department and non-entitlement towns (those with a population under 50,000) distributed by the State as a pass-through.

Importantly, there is a provision that will allow municipalities in states—like Connecticut—to receive additional funds that would have been allocated to counties, if the State had county-level government.

There still remains some questions as to how the Treasury Department will allow some of the funds to be used. CCM will be working with the National League of Cities to have Treasury answer some of the questions that require additional guidance.

Some of the specific provisions of ARP include:

  • State and local governments must provide periodic reports to the Treasury Department with a detailed accounting of the use of funds. States and territories must also provide any modifications to tax revenue sources. Funds can be recouped by the Treasury Department if the recipient does not comply with the eligible uses.
  • Local governments will receive allocations in two tranches—the first half 60 days after enactment and the other half one year later. For non-entitlement units of local government, those deadlines are the dates for Treasury to send the funding to the state, which has an additional 30 days to distribute to each non-entitlement unit of local government.
  • States have no discretionary authority to change the amount of, or attach additional requirements to, the payments allocated to local governments.