SPEND TOCC COVID FUNDS ON ACTUAL COVID RELIEF
The American Rescue Plan Act became federal law in March, to provide, among other things, resources to state, county, and incorporated local governments to help turn the tide on the Covid pandemic, address its economic fallout, and lay the foundation for a strong and equitable recovery. Many local communities have been hard-hit by Covid. In contrast, the Town Of Chevy Chase as an entity has not been significantly (if at all) negatively affected by the pandemic. The Town has nonetheless applied for some $2.35 million, for which the Town as an incorporated entity is eligible to receive under the Act. This is true even though the Town has approximately $10 million in the Town’s general fund, money that could be used for improvements to the Town. The Town Council is seriously considering spending some or all of the $2.3 million relief money in or near the Town, on land acquisition and infrastructure projects that would be unrelated to people harmed by Covid.
We the undersigned residents of the Town are opposed to spending any of the relief funds for improvements such as maintenance or infrastructure, either within the Town or in areas near the Town. The fact that we may be allowed to spend the funds for those purposes does not mean we should spend them for such purposes. The Town has a real opportunity to help people who were physically, mentally, or economically harmed by Covid. We urge the Council to consider lawful funding options that will benefit the people actually harmed by Covid. We also urgently ask the Town Council to decide as soon as possible that the Town will not use any of this money to improve or benefit the Town as an entity.