The Minnesota Senate today approved legislation creating a formula to fairly distribute the share of federal COVID-19 assistance that can be used to help local governments. Governor Tim Walz currently has the sole authority over the federal coronavirus aid, and this bill was initiated due to concerns that have been raised about both transparency and accountability in how the aid is distributed.
Minnesota received more than $2 billion from the federal government to help local governments, health professionals, and businesses fight COVID. That money went into an account called the Federal Coronavirus Relief Fund, so it could be quickly deployed to places it is needed most. This bill guarantees that the local government portion of the funding – about $841 million – will be fairly distributed to Minnesota counties, cities, and towns based on their population.
“Our communities have endured extraordinary hardships in the wake of COVID-19,” said Senator Bruce Anderson (R-Buffalo). “The economic impact of this pandemic has devastated local economies. This bill will fairly and urgently distribute the federal funds to our district so they can keep moving forward down the path to recovery.”