Mayor Greg Verga Announces the Covid Local Fiscal Recovery Funds Appropriation Plan and Upcoming Infrastructure Projects

Funding will positively impact Gloucester’s community and residents for years to come. 

 

Today, Mayor Greg Verga announced the first major investment of the Covid Local Fiscal Recovery Funds and the general plan for this funding. Under the American Rescue Plan Act’s (ARPA) local funding provisions, the City of Gloucester was allocated $23 million. Mayor Verga launched the Covid Local Fiscal Recovery Funds Listening Group to solicit public input on the funding opportunity and report their findings back to the administration. After thoroughly reviewing the group’s report and the community’s requests, Mayor Verga has determined to appropriate Covid Local Fiscal Recovery Funds to the following categories:            

 

●       Infrastructure

●       Housing

●       Economic Development

●       Public Health

●       Community Initiatives

●       Parks and Open Space

●       Arts and Culture

●       General Government/Revenue Recovery                                           

 

“I am so appreciative of all of the hard work and dedication of the Covid Local Fiscal Recovery Funds Listening Group and to all of the residents and organizations for participating in this important dialogue,” said Mayor Greg Verga. “This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and I want to be sure we are using this funding to positively impact our residents for years to come.”

 

Mayor Verga has chosen to strategically invest a significant amount of the $23 million in the City’s infrastructure in response to several critical issues within the community. From the beginning of Mayor Verga’s administration, it has been a priority to tackle the necessary upgrades for Gloucester’s wastewater treatment plant. The City of Gloucester will allocate 65% of the Covid Local Fiscal Recovery Funds to infrastructure projects; this includes $10 million to the wastewater treatment plant and $3 million to address our City’s roads. 

 

“It is time to stop kicking the can down the road and start the work on our wastewater treatment plant,” said Verga. “We can’t invest significantly in other areas until we have an adequate wastewater treatment plant; this investment is a necessary first step. I want to do the most good for the most people over the most time, and this project does just that.”

 

The $3 million investment will build on Mayor Verga’s commitment to improving Gloucester’s streets; the Mayor significantly increased the Department of Public Works (DPW) Fiscal Year 2023 paving budget and allocated additional free cash last fiscal year to have a greater impact on our roads. Due to this increased funding, Gloucester’s DPW will be able to repave several municipal roads and has already started its work. Attached is the “Fall 2022 and Spring 2023 Paving Schedule” that has already begun; this schedule is subject to change.

 

In addition to infrastructure, the Covid Local Fiscal Recovery Funds will be distributed across various priorities. The current economic landscape and post-Covid society have highlighted the need to invest in affordable housing, parks and recreation, and public health. Mayor Verga will allocate much-needed funds to support several projects and initiatives in these areas. Additional information regarding these categories will be announced in the coming weeks.

 

“This is an exciting opportunity and gives us the ability to have a real impact on our community,” said Verga. “This framework gives a good idea of our investment plan for this funding, and I look forward to continuing our work.”

 

For the final Covid Local Fiscal Recovery Funds Listening Group report and public submissions, please visit: https://arpa.gloucester-ma.gov/

 

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