Georgia announces ARPA grant funding for projects

Governor Brian Kemp of Georgia on Thursday announced the recipients of $225 million of federal health and public facilities development grants funded by the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.

The state selected142 projects from a crowded field of proposals submitted by local governments and nonprofit organizations as per federal regulation that would help “improve neighborhood assets” in Georgia communities “disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic,” Kemp’s office said in a press release. 

“With our partners on both the local and state levels, we’ve prioritized helping Georgia’s communities further recover from the pandemic with a bottom-up approach,” the governor said. “Today, we’re investing these funds to see that those most heavily impacted have even more resources at their disposal, and I want to thank our partners for helping us make that possible.”

The grants range between several million dollars to just a few thousand and will bankroll a wide range of projects, from the creation of recreational centers, laying of new sidewalks, development of parks, and improvement to some public medical facilities.

Winners come from across the state’s rural townships and urban centers, but the first funds to be distributed will be to projects in non-entitlement cities, a federal designation for those with a population smaller than 50,0000, the state’s budget office said.

Funding comes by way of the Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds program created under ARPA, which will deliver $350 billion in grant base funding to state and local governments over the next few years for COVID-19 recovery efforts.

Georgia’s received $4.8 billion in funds from the SLFRF, according to the state’s budget office, which will be placed in successive rounds to projects approved by Georgia Jobs and Infrastructure Committees, created in 2021 and charged with reviewing and selecting grant proposals for federal funds for the governor’s ultimate approval.

The committee in February approved another $408 million tranche of ARPA funding for 49 projects related to broadband development in the state.

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