Assisting Staff with the Challenges of Managing the Spending and Community Engagement on ARPA Funds

The Department of Treasury, 31 CFR Part 35 RIN 1505-AC77, Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds, Interim Final Rule, states “Implementation of the Fiscal Recovery Funds also reflect the importance of public input, transparency, and accountability. Treasury seeks comment on all aspects of the Interim Final Rule and, to better facilitate public comment, has included specific questions throughout this Supplementary Information. Treasury encourages State, local, and Tribal governments in particular to provide feedback and to engage with Treasury regarding issues that may arise regarding all aspects of this Interim Final Rule and Treasury’s work in administering the Fiscal Recovery Funds. In addition, the Interim Final Rule establishes certain regular reporting requirements, including by requiring State, local, and Tribal governments to publish information regarding uses of Fiscal Recovery Funds payments in their local jurisdiction. These reporting requirements reflect the need for transparency and accountability, while recognizing and minimizing the burden, particularly for smaller local governments. Treasury urges State, territorial, Tribal, and local governments to engage their constituents and communities in developing plans to use these payments, given the scale of funding and its potential to catalyze broader economic recovery and rebuilding.”

The management of these funds and the necessary community outreach can be overwhelming for agencies of every size. The Department of Treasury urges agencies to engage their constituents and communities in developing plans to use these payments, given the scale of funding and its potential to propel economic recovery and rebuilding. In addition, the interim rule establishes specific financial reporting to be shared with the public, reflecting the need for transparency and accountability.

Although ARPA funding provides communities with a monumental opportunity to start to rebuild their local economies, it also poses additional challenges. With the rising retirement of longtime employees and the competition from the private sector, many municipal agencies are challenged with running the day-to-day operations with limited staffing.

Capital Strategic Solutions is assisting agencies across the Commonwealth with ARPA, CARES, and FEMA grants.

Due to the potential magnitude of these dollars, it is vital to ensure that public officials and the communities which they serve are on the same page regarding community priorities. The dollars coming in from the American Rescue Plan Act provide a once-in-a-generation opportunity to pursue a more equitable economic recovery. Public input, engagement and information will be critical to ensuring that positive effects of these dollars are felt for years to come. Our team can provide the expertise and experience needed to develop a spending plan applicable to the State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds and conduct public outreach. Our team understands that public engagement sessions aren’t one-size-fits-all. Each community and initiative has its own unique take on what will work best, and we work with our clients on a needed basis to develop the most effective outreach strategies.

From the point of funding through construction, our team provides qualified staff and solutions that will assist and lessen the burden on your existing staff. Our services include:

  • Community Engagement

  • Grant Writing and Management

  • Impact Mitigation & Crisis Communication

  • Strategic Solutions for Data Management

  • Tactical Social Media Outreach

  • Team Training

  • Virtual & In-person Event Planning

  • Website & Graphic Design

By prioritizing eligible projects and using the American Rescue Plan Act, our team will leverage—and make the most of—every available federal and state dollar. This helps projects get completed with as little impact to the taxpayers as possible. Much like the federal funds made available through the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008, funds stemming from ARPA will be competitive. To be in a competitive position to receive funding, it is important that your project has completed design and is ready to break ground.

Have a project that isn’t “shovel ready”? Our team can help you get there. Schedule a call with our Chief Development Officer, Jennifer Thompson, at to talk about how we can help.

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