Pingree Touts More Than $5 Billion in Aid for Maine’s State, Local Government in Heroes Act
Heroes Act is Latest COVID-19 Relief Package Released Today by House Democrats
Washington, May 12, 2020
Congresswoman Chellie Pingree (D-Maine) released the following statement on the $875 billion in funding proposed for state and local governments in the Heroes Act, the House’s newly released legislation for coronavirus response efforts. You can find a town by town breakdown of the funding included in the Heroes Act for the state of Maine and Maine municipalities here.
“Maine municipalities—big and small—have stepped up in unprecedented ways to keep their communities safe during this global pandemic while simultaneously facing devastating revenue shortfalls due to limited tax collection,” said Pingree. “For the last two months, I’ve fought to make sure that Congress’ next legislative response to COVID-19 provides significant support for both the state and small cities and towns like the ones found across Maine. I’m proud to see this robust funding included in the Heroes Act, especially the more than $5 billion that would come directly to Maine governments.”
The Heroes Act would create new State and Local Coronavirus Relief Funds through the Department of the Treasury for COVID-19 related expenses, to replace foregone revenues for state and local governments, or to respond to negative economic impacts of the coronavirus pandemic. Under the legislation, the State of Maine would receive $1,670,000,000 and local Maine governments would receive $1,101,000,000 in 2020. The State would receive $1,777,000,000 and local Maine governments would receive $551,000,000 in 2021.
Pingree has been a vocal advocate of increased funding for state and local governments during the coronavirus pandemic. The CARES Act included a $150 billion Coronavirus Relief Fund for states and certain local governments but did not include direct funding for localities with populations under 500,000. Further, states and municipalities were not allowed to use those funds to offset lost revenue. On April 2, Pingree joined 128 members of the House of Representatives on a letter urging Speaker Nancy Pelosi to include direct assistance to smaller municipalities in future COVID-19 response packages. She has cosponsored the Coronavirus Community Relief Act, a bill to provide $250 billion for smaller local governments, and the Coronavirus Relief for States Act, which calls for $500 billion in relief for states.