Springfield, MA – Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and the city American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) team announced today the City of Springfield’s sixth round of ARPA RFP funding awards totaling $84,000 for direct cash assistance for households located within the Qualified Census Tracts (QCT). The announcement continues to highlight the Sarno Administrations commitment to utilizing the city of Springfield’s allocation of federal ARPA funding to provide relief and assistance to residents.
The initial round of 60 ARPA household applications approved will each be awarded $1,400 in direct cash assistance, the most that can be awarded under federal ARPA guidelines.
To date, the city has received 114 ARPA household applications that are eligible by the QCT. However, 54 or 47% of the pending household applications are incomplete and need to submit proof and verification of Springfield residency.
The city’s ARPA team will continue to review and follow up with all pending ARPA applications for households and will award additional household applications once all eligibility requirements have been submitted and approved.
Due to reports from across the country of fraud and abuse of ARPA monies, the City of Springfield is thoroughly reviewing and verifying all ARPA applications. Per the federal guidelines for eligibility of direct cash assistance for households, proof of Springfield residency is required.
Those awarded households will be contacted by a member of the ARPA team in the coming days. The city ARPA team would like to encourage any Springfield resident who has submitted an ARPA application to contact them to confirm that all documentation and verification is complete. Residents can contact the city ARPA team by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mayor Sarno states, “I want to thank our award winning finance team led by Chief Administrative and Financial Officer TJ Plante and ARPA team led by Director Melanie Acobe for working diligently to review and approve this sixth round of local ARPA funding for households. I am eager to get these household ARPA applications approved and out ASAP but we must be cognizant that all of the proper verification documentations are submitted. Per federal guidelines, there has to be a thorough review and formalized verification process of the direct cash assistance so that only Springfield residents and households truly in need are awarded, if not the monies would have to be paid back.”
“My administration is proud to announce this sixth round of local ARPA funding of $1,400 as direct cash assistance for 60 ARPA households applications totaling $84,000 – with more to come,” Mayor Sarno added. “This direct cash assistance will provide much-needed relief for residents as we continue to recover and move our Springfield forward post-pandemic.”
This sixth round of ARPA funding providing direct relief and assistance to households is in addition to the approximate $3 million that has already been allocated to Wayfinders to continue to provide assistance for residents with their mortgage, rent and utility bills.
“There is more to come as our dedicated ARPA team continues to review applications and make sure that they meet all of the federal eligibility requirements and verification process. I am looking forward to making additional announcements in the future as my administration continues to move on our local ARPA RFP front – especially as we continue to move to provide much-needed relief and assistance for our homeowners, seniors, small businesses and nonprofits,” said Mayor Sarno. “I would also like to encourage our state Legislature to follow our lead and provide much-need relief and assistance for our residents, businesses and nonprofits by committing the over $5 billion of ARPA funding the Commonwealth has been allocated.”
Director of ARPA Melanie Acobe stated, “The Department of Recovery and Business Continuity is pleased to announce this sixth round of ARPA funding of direct cash assistance for eligible households. I want to thank those who have submitted an application for their patience and understanding as we continue to review and process the hundreds of applications that have been submitted to confirm that they meet all federal eligibility and verification requirements. We will continue to review and process all of the applications submitted and make recommendations accordingly.”
ARPA Advisory Committee member and City Clerk Gladys Oyola said, “I am once again excited with this sixth round of ARPA RFP funding announcements for households. Per the federal guidelines, this direct cash assistance will provide much-need relief and assistance for our residents. I am looking forward to joining with Mayor Sarno and the dedicated ARPA team for future announcements that invest in our community.”
The $84,000 awarded in the sixth round of ARPA announcement funding for households brings the total ARPA funding awarded to approximately $47.4 million.
Of note, the ARPA team is in the process of updating the ARPA household and senior application to streamline and make the application process easier for residents. The new updated ARPA household and senior application will be posted online on the city’s website by next week.
The City of Springfield received $123.8 million in ARPA funding as part of the $350 billion federal American Rescue Plan Act designated for direct aid to state, local and tribal governments. After meeting with nearly 30 neighborhood councils and other organizations as part of Mayor Sarno’s citywide listening sessions to hear directly from our residents and the business community, Mayor Sarno identified seven categories in which RFP’s will be utilized to enhance projects, programs and initiatives across the city for the betterment of our residents and businesses. They include: Nonprofit Assistance, New Business Assistance, Small Business Assistance, Senior Citizen Assistance, Neighborhood/Household Assistance, Capital Projects/Public Space Improvements, and Job Creation/Economic Development.
For more information on the City of Springfield’s ARPA RFP process, ARPA applications and FAQs, please visit the Department of Recovery and Business Continuity webpage at: www.springfield-ma.gov/finance/arpa