AG Connors Joins in Seeking Extension for CARES Act Funding
Hawaiʻi Attorney General Clare E. Connors joined a coalition of attorneys general urging Congress to extend the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economy Act funding until the end of 2021.
The effort is being led by Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost and Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller, who wrote the letter signed by the attorneys general and sent it to Congress urging members to extend the Dec. 30, 2020, deadline.
“The challenges created by this pandemic will continue well after Dec. 31,” said Attorney General Connors. “Extending the deadline by a year will allow local governments to more thoughtfully and effectively respond to the crisis using the funding resources allocated by the federal government.”
With several pending measures, including bipartisan extension measures in both the House and Senate, the attorneys general are urging Congress to pass one of these measures to give states and local communities additional time to utilize COVID-relief resources.
Congress passed the CARES Act in March in anticipation of unprecedented costs and economic disruption stemming from the pandemic. The move provided more than $2 trillion in economic stimulus to state and local governments in an effort to combat the impacts of the pandemic.
One of the restrictions placed on the funding, however, limits the money’s use to expenses incurred between March 1, 2020, and Dec. 30, 2020.
“This time frame likely made sense in late March when the CARES Act was passed, but we have learned a great deal about COVID-19 in the past seven months,” the letter states. “Among other things, we know that the pandemic will continue to challenge communities well beyond December 30, 2020 – a deadline that now seems unreasonable.”
By extending the deadline, backers of the request say communities nationwide will be able to be more strategic with the use of CARES Act funds.
The letter was signed by attorneys general in: Alaska, American Samoa, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Guam, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Northern Mariana Islands, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Virgin Islands, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.