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American Rescue Plan Act

  • The City of Gresham will receive $25.3 million through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). 

    • What is the American Rescue Plan Act?
    • What does it mean for Gresham?
    • What can the funds be used for?
    • What has Council said so far?
    What is the American Rescue Plan Act?

    The purpose of this $1.9 trillion federal stimulus bill is to help communities respond to and recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. State and local governments receive money directly to fix budget shortfalls and invest in their communities.

    What does it mean for Gresham?

    The City will receive $25.3 million, to be spent by 2026. Gresham received $12.7 in September; the remaining funds will not be available until fall 2022.

    What can the funds be used for?

    The federal government has rules for how these funds can be used. Categories include:

    • Supporting the public health response.
    • Addressing negative economic impacts caused by the pandemic.
    • Serving the hardest hit communities.
    • Replacing local government revenue loss.
    • Investing in water and sewer infrastructure.
    • Investing in broadband infrastructure.
    What has Council said so far?

    City Council will consider the following principles when deciding how to invest these funds:

    • Equitable: Benefits the hardest hit residents and  businesses.
    • Strategic: Uses one-time funding wisely to provide the largest benefits to the community.
    • Leveraging: Fills a gap where no other COVID recovery funds may exist or complements federal, state or regional ARPA investments.
    • Broad benefits: Considers City and community needs, especially projects that benefit both.
    • High priority: Connects to Council Work Plan priorities adopted by City Council.  

    Allocation of funds

    City Council discussed ARPA funding on Dec. 7. Watch the meeting.

    Council voted to allocate the first half of its ARPA funds as follows:

    • Budget development: Allocated $1.35 million in ARPA funds to fill the projected gap between revenue and expenses for Fiscal Year 2022/23. The remaining gap will be filled with an extension of the Police, Fire and Parks fee temporary increase of $7.50, which is currently set to expire June 2022. Staff will return to Council on Dec. 14 with a Council Bill that extends the increase through June 2023.
    • Administrative costs: Allocated 3% of ARPA funds to administrative costs, with $380,000 allocated now.
    • Public safety package: Allocated a total package of $2.689 million for Police and Fire, including hiring incentives for Police officers, three civilian Police positions to alleviate workload for detectives and address the rise in violent crime across the region, expansion of the Police Mental Health/Services Coordination Team to add two clinicians; three Firefighter Paramedic limited-term positions, and $250,000 for general Fire services, which will be discussed further at the Dec. 14 meeting
    • Housing and houselessness: Allocated a total package of $750,000 for expansion of the homeless services team from two to three, a limited-term housing resource coordinator position to connect residents to resources, and a modest amount of administrative support for nonprofits with CBDG/HOME contracts with the City.
    • Business grant program: Allocated $500,000 for a grant to mitigate financial impacts to businesses due to the pandemic. Grants will be capped at $10,000 each; 50% of the pool will be allocated for state-certified women, minority, veteran, emerging businesses. The grants will launch in February.
    • Community support package: Allocated $60,000 to utility assistance. Allocated $420,000 to a community needs grant program, which allows nonprofits to apply to provide critical community services like childcare assistance, rent assistance, food support or other related needs. Grants are capped at $30,000; we anticipate launching in December.

    Staff will return to Council to seek direction for allocating remaining funds. 

  • Council-approved ARPA projects

  • Aldercrest Apartments | $1.2 million loan

    To address housing needs, Council granted an emergency ARPA loan to Human Solutions to save affordable housing provided by the Aldercrest Apartments. The funding agreement allows Human Solutions to purchase, renovate, and develop 68 permanently affordable housing units. The state will reimburse the City for the loan amount. 

    Business Grant Program | $510,000

    Offered to small businesses in February, grants will ease pandemic-related financial impacts to businesses. Fifty percent of the pool will be reserved for state-certified women, minority, veteran and emerging businesses. 

    City of Gresham COVID-19 Expenses | $500,000

    Reimbursement for personal protection equipment and supplies for staff providing public services for the community during the pandemic. 

    Community Assistance Grant Program | $350,000

    Awarded funding for nonprofit organizations to provide services to community members negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. With a focus on individuals who may be especially susceptible.

    2022 ARPA Community Assistance Grant recipients

    • Birch Community Services – Freezer expansion to store and distribute food: $30,000
    • Boxes of Love – Supporting Gresham’s most vulnerable infants/children in foster care system: $30,000
    • Gresham Area Chamber of Commerce – Tourism/marketing Gresham: $30,000
    • Gresham Historical Society – Gresham public history program: $30,000
    • Kefi Care Programs – Day programs and care for developmental/intellectual disability clients: $30,000
    • Latino Network – COVID-19 response wraparound support: $30,000
    • Meals on Wheels People – Meals 4 Kids: $30,000
    • MetroEast Community Media – Mobile media innovation lab and digital literacy: $30,000
    • My Father’s House – “The Journey” job training program for people with low incomes: $30,000
    • Rockwood CDC – Rockwood English Language Institute for immigrant communities: $20,000
    • Slavic Community Center – Language-specific support for Slavic community in Gresham offering utility and cultural food assistance: $30,000
    • WomensFirst Transition and Referral Center – Serving women and the BIPOC community who have been negatively impacted by COVID-19: $30,000 
    Computer Replacement | $600,000

    To finish replacing all City computers, which are out of warranty and contributing to slow and inefficient operations.


    Housing and Houselessness | $750,000

    Expansion of the homeless services team; a limited term housing resource coordinator position to connect residents to resources; and a modest amount of administrative support for nonprofits with City contracts.

    Organizational Stability | $2.77 million
    • Allocated $1.35 million in ARPA funds to fill the projected gap between revenue and expenses for the City's fiscal year 2022/23 budget.
    • Granted a modest 3% of APRA funds to cover administrative costs of distributing these funds, following reporting requirements, and administering grant programs.
    • Provided resources to Human Resources to better manage employee and labor relations.
    • Resources to complete implementation of City's core financial, human resources and community services system.
    Public Safety | $5.2 million

    City Council approved:

    • Hiring incentives for Police officers and six non-sworn Police positions to address the rise in violent crime across the region.
    • Expanding the Police Mental Health/Services Coordination Team to add two clinicians.
    • Equipment and training for Police civilian positions.
    • Adding four firefighter-paramedic limited term positions.
    •  Fire Department COVID-19 related overtime during the pandemic.
    • Four Community Safety Officers, trained civilian positions who can handle non-violent police calls, such as property crime reports, directing traffic and community relations.
    Planning for the Future | $400,000

    City Council approved funds for:

    • Updating the Pleasant Valley concept plan, originally adopted by Council in 2002, to better meet needs for residential housing and businesses.
    • Developing a community center feasibility study, as a result of community engagement results from Imagine Gresham, to give Council more information to determine when or how to move forward with that idea.
    Utility Assistance Program | $120,000

    More funding to meet a higher need for utility bill help while the community recovers from the pandemic.

    Youth Violence Prevention Program | $1 million

    To address public safety, Council granted ARPA funding to focus on the rise in violence our community has experienced the past year. Funds will primarily go to culturally specific community-based organizations that specialize in providing services for youth and young adults in Gresham. Includes support for more positive recreational and social engagement activities. Gresham is excited to launch new Youth Services division

  • Next steps

    The City expects to receive additional ARPA funds in 2022. Staff will seek direction from Council for allocating these funds.