Lexington mayor unveils plan for federal COVID-19 funding

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Lexington is finalizing plans on how to spend money for President Biden’s American Rescue Plan—but officials wanted the public’s opinion first. (FOX 56)

LEXINGTON, Ky. (FOX 56) – The federal government has sent Lexington $120 million through the American Rescue Plan. Mayor Linda Gorton and city council members are asking for the public’s input on how the money should be spent.

“There will be opportunities for everybody to submit their ideas, whether they’re an individual or a group, or a club,” Mayor Gorton said.

People in the community can submit their ideas through an online survey. Those without internet can pick up a paper copy.

The mayor plans to hold public hearings and town halls in the coming the weeks. She says there will be plenty of opportunities for public input as the decision-making process moves forward.

“Council members will want to host things in their districts, and it’s going to be a great time for input,” Mayor Gorton said.

Vice Mayor Steve Kay says submitted projects must adhere to federal guidelines.

“The top priority are projects that will have a direct impact on vulnerable populations, and projects that will help people most severely affected by the pandemic,” Vice Mayor Kay said.

City leaders are looking for budget-related projects with no ongoing costs. They’re also looking for projects that will impact social and physical infrastructure.

The city must distribute all federal COVID relief funds by the end of 2024. The money must be spent by the end of 2026.

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