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Polis, Colorado lawmakers unveil spending plan for billions in federal aid

Gov. Jared Polis

DENVER, Colo. (KRDO)-- Governor Jared Polis announced Colorado's plan to distribute federal funds awarded through the American Rescue Plan Act alongside state lawmakers Monday.

According to the U.S. Department of Treasury guidelines released earlier this month, Colorado is expected to receive $5.7 billion in funding. Over $3.8 billion will go to the state, $1.1 billion for Colorado counties, $551 million for cities, and $265 million for local governments.

Governor Polis outlined a funding plan Monday for the state's $3.8 billion, dedicating $1.3 billion to Colorado's budget. Another one-third will support workforce development, reducing housing costs, and mental and behavioral health resources. The last third is being allocated toward recovery and relief to create jobs, modernize the state's transportation system, invest in public lands and agricultural support.

A detailed breakdown of the funds includes:

  • $1 billion will go toward fortifying the state budget and maintaining fiscal integrity
  • $300 million will go towards Colorado’s ongoing response to the COVID pandemic
  • Between $400-$550 million will go towards affordable housing and homeownership efforts
  • Between $400-$550 million towards mental and behavioral health programs 
  • Approximately $200 million towards workforce development and education 
  • Approximately $817 million will be for economic recovery and relief
  • $404- $414 million for transportation and infrastructure, and parks and agriculture 

“We’ve heard communities across our state loud and clear," Polis said, "The federal stimulus funds that flow from Colorado offer a once in a generation opportunity to improve our quality of life, invigorate our economy and help our state recover faster and stronger than ever before.“ 

According to state leaders, the funds will help put an end to pandemic hardship felt by Coloradans in the last year.

"The pandemic exacerbated many of the existing problems that our society is faced with and too many people are still struggling to recover," Colorado Senate President Leroy Garcia said.

The state plans to spend $2 billion this legislative session. Another $1.8 billion is funds is expected to be used at the beginning of the next legislative session.

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Jen Moynihan

Jen Moynihan is a weekend anchor and reporter for KRDO. Learn more about Jen here.

Comments

13 Comments

  1. No check in the mail for those who need money now from America being shut down for a year?
    NOPE….It will all be end up in the same old dirty little hands. A huge portion will be used to bring in millions of illegal criminal aliens from south of the border to be settled across America.
    Prepare for a summer of unprecedented protests and violent riots. Biden the demented fraud puppet and the radical Marxist Democrats that now occupy our government will not waiver from their mission to destroy america.

    1. The federal government has already put checks in the mail, twice, once by Trump, once by Biden. Even for those who were still employed. You want more give aways?

      1. To those still in need of money due to no fault of their own other than the government having shut down America for a year? In a word, yes.

  2. they really despise the poor in this country.
    Not all of it is due to a lack of trying.
    Some people experience catastrophes in their life that paints them into a corner for a meager existence.
    The FPL is out of date. The index they are using to determine eligibility for food assistance is based on the cost of food in 1963 x 3. So by their account, we should still have a 15 cent loaf of bread.
    but lets hand that first BILLION $$ right to the state to do with as they see fit without any input from the citizens.

    1. Don’t forget the CPI, consumer Price index, which is used to adjust the annual amount of social security increases to retired people. This index does not truly reflect the rising cost of living. It has resulted in minuscule yearly social security payment increases resulting in seniors having less buying power each year.
      Though social security was not meant for people to entirely live on the annual increases at least should reflect true inflation. As the value of the dollar will continue to decrease due to unrestrained printing of money those on social security will be most hurt and they are among the most vulnerable people in our society. A devastating system.
      How the CPI is determined was manipulated years ago, keeping it low,to deny seniors necessary social security increases to save the government money.

      1. let me tell you what they did to my family 2 years ago:

        They gave us a total of $11.00 in a COLA raise in our social security.
        It immediately disqualified us from $300.00 in food assistance as well as they stopped paying my husband’s $148.00 medicare premium.
        So we gained $11.00 and lost $438.00.
        This is how it’s been going.
        I know that you are not supposed to DEpEND on SS but when it’s given due to an irreversible condition, it’s all we have. Although, having “fatherless children, one after the other, will certainly get you a big hike in benefits in many cases. I would never carelessly bring a child into the world but if it carries no personal responsibility and it gets you more free housing, food, money. etc.. I want you to know I am female and I just despise what I had to say. Basically, for 3 people living together, the cut-off is $2100. a month based on the fpL, no deductions allowed for medicare premium, and a standard figure is used to calculate your utilities. Nothing else is acceptable not tv not the internet- yet everything is ONLINE in regards to applying for benefits.ANd a small allowance for one phone. No taking into account mandatory bills like car insurance, car registration, taxes. Believe what I am saying -I live it by the Grace of God but if all 3 of us suddenly left the planet altogether, I would just be delighted. This is a hard life to live, especially in one of the most expensive cities in the US. But I have huge faith in God.

        1. Wow that was quite a price you paid for just the $11 increase in social security. Social security payouts have to be brought up to par with a our economy. The federal poverty level must be raised because as you cited it is much too low.
          How the CPI is determined must be changed to reflect real world prices so that social security can be properly adjusted to reflect real inflation.
          The FPL, federal poverty level, must be changed to rise in step with inflation.
          However since the government is mainly concerned with keeping corporations, high paying lobbies and oligarchs happy there is not much hope for the needed changes to take place with the FPL and CPI.

        2. My condolences to you and yours FCN. I do agree the system is out of balance, and I do not know if it will ever be able to be fixed, but I too hope that one day the politicians will put the will “of the people” ahead of the corporations again one day.

        3. Our household knows the Same Pain! Husband was ‘Forced’ to retire by the company he was working, by 1) bought by another entity that Promised him personally to uphold the Workman’s Comp issue, But 2) CANCELED the Scheduled Surgery The Day BEFORE, 3) Fought to ‘Restore’ him to FULL Capacity Duties With Out That surgery, Then 4) FIRED him for Not Being Able To Perform his assigned tasks, that he had to get a Denver lawyer to get the company to Pay for the surgery and pay his back-wages, was trying to get him reinstalled to continue working until he desired to retire. The Judge condemned the company, got the surgery done, but put the rest to’Mediation’, so Some funds were awarded, but not as requested and no job, with Disability accrued due to The Year postponement of the surgery, inability to rehab as well if it had happened WHEN it Should Have. Then the State has been back & forth for 4 Years, with Benefits or Not, had him listed as Owning like 11 cars(the full succession of over the years) not the 1 that was current, property that Never Was, and funds that we WISHED for but Never HAD, that we suspect that someone was combining some 1 or 2 others of common name. Then last year, the COLA did the same to his Medicaid/Medicare! Only the COVID Boosts have kept us eating. But though 2 Recalls have FAILED to remove the present Gov, we all KNOW that ILLEGALS are now getting FREE Housing and Tax Payer PAID Benefits, and CO State Drivers Licences!

      2. You are not using Social Security are you?!
        That program is a Socialist program that was enacted in 1935.
        You should send the money back since you are so against all Socialist programs.
        I would have assumed you would be good with them keeping the CPI down that way our government isn’t spending so much money on people that are not continuing to contribute to today’s society. Or is this view you have, only a view of the socialist systems “you” don’t have to use so “you” can demean others while you are using different government socialist system(s). What does hypocrite mean to you? Are you considering a party change?

        1. YAWN. I do not read your delusional rants. Again you wasted your time.

        2. anothermindlesszealot; If Their Work and thus Their TAXES were Taken to be held until They NEEDED them, as Social Security, WHY Do you think that They SHOULDN’T BE Given THEIR Funds Back?? The INTEREST on those funds was happily used by The Government, and then the Base Funds TOO, most likely. Social Security is A FORCED Program that doesn’t have an OPT-OUT. You seem to find it ACCEPTABLE to Grant The GOVERNMENT The RIGHT to TAKE Our Hard EARNED Money to Support the Interlopers From OTHER Countries, that for certain ‘they’ DIDN’T Earn!! Is your cranium so far up your rectum as to FORGET Those Facts? I say you are the one to which the “hypocrite” tag applies to, your faulty thought processes!

  3. On a totally unrelated item coming out of Denver. The other local stations are reporting the state Supreme Court has ruled that a law that says school districts can raise taxes without a vote of the people can proceed. Totally ignores what TABOR, and the state constitutuon say. And the state Atoorney General argued for the law. Guess we can all choose which laws qe are going to obey.

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