SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – As the new year nears, Utah Attorney General Sean D. Reyes is urging Congress to extend the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economy (CARES) Act funding until the end of 2021.
“Although the new vaccines offer significant hope for the future, the Coronavirus pandemic is not over, and there are thousands of Utahns suffering economic and other hardships because of it. Congress should take action on extending the CARES Act, and I am urging them to prioritize this and get it done as soon as possible,” Attorney General Reyes says.
With several pending measures, including bipartisan extension measures in both the House and Senate, the attorneys general urge Congress to pass one of these measures to give states and local communities additional time to utilize the precious COVID-relief resources.
Reyes says COVID-19 has negatively impacted nearly every facet of American society. In anticipation of unprecedented costs and economic disruption stemming from the pandemic, Congress passed the CARES Act in March. 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 December 30, 2020.
Reyes adds, “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. Among other things, we know that the pandemic will continue to challenge communities well beyond December 30, 2020 – a deadline that now seems unreasonable.”
The reelected attorney general closed by saying; As the pandemic continues to set record infections, states and local communities will continue to incur COVID-related expenses next year. By extending the deadline, communities nationwide will be able to be more strategic with the use of CARES Act funds.
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