As we wrap up 2021 and ramp up budget season we wanted to share information on the Town’s ARPA engagement plan and upcoming milestones.
With the expiration of federal CAREs funding in December of 2021, a COVID Response Continuation budget will be submitted to the Board in early January so the Town can continue to support remote meetings, provide safe access to public buildings, manage grant compliance activities, and provide other COVID-related responses. This request is separate from project-specific requests that may be considered as part of a larger strategy regarding the use of APRA funds.
The Brookline Community Foundation (BCF) is nearing the end of its engagement process that will help inform the Board of community priorities for ARPA-funded projects. A focus group for town-sponsored projects will be held on January 6, 2022, at 2 PM and then the BCF will hold informational sessions and workshops to provide technical support for non-town ARPA submissions.
The Town /School Partnership Committee will convene on January 3rd to discuss the FY23 budget challenges and possible use of the revenue replacement funding (currently quantified at approximately $6M for calendar year 2021) to reduce the negative impact of their budget shortfall. The Town will likely receive a report from the BCF in mid-January and will look for community projects to be submitted at the end of January. Once the Board has received the report they will receive a recommendation from the Town Administrator on funding allocations per eligible use category.
Applications will continue to be received on a rolling basis, and the first round of project approvals will likely occur in the spring of 2022. Should more urgent needs arise the Board will address these on an as needed basis. We look forward to hearing the results of the community engagement process and using these funds to support the town's needs.