Updated: February 27, 2021
More than 411 mayors from across the United States on Monday wrote a letter to Speaker Pelosi, Leader Schumer, Leader McCarthy and Leader McConnell urging them to take immediate action in passing the American Rescue Plan to give their communities the assistance they desperately need. The mayors said the President’s plan is critical to fund a national vaccine program and put the economy on a path to recovery.
The mayors wrote: “American cities and our essential workers have been serving at the frontlines of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic for nearly a year. We have been charged with executing herculean public health efforts and an unprecedented emergency response. Despite immense fiscal pressure, your local government partners oversaw those efforts, while trying to maintain essential services and increase our internal capacity to provide support for residents and businesses who have been crippled by a tanking economy.”
The 411 bipartisan mayors join a long list of economists and economic organizations urging the benefits of immediate relief including Brookings, Moody’s Analytics, and the Chief Economist of the International Monetary Fund. And a Reuters survey of dozens of economists found that over 90% believed that it would “boost the economy significantly.” The American Rescue Plan has received praise from across the political spectrum – from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the Business Roundtable to Senator Sanders and organized labor. And, top economic advisors from the last four presidents: Kevin Hassett, Gene Sperling, R. Glenn Hubbard, and Alan Blinder have all said that additional stimulus is needed to rescue the economy
Letter: More than 400 Bipartisan Mayors Now Signed on To Letter Calling for Action on Direct Fiscal Assistance for Cities
[By United States Conference of Mayors, 2/1/2021]
Dear Speaker Pelosi, Leader Schumer, Leader McCarthy and Leader McConnell
On behalf of The United States Conference of Mayors, we urge you to take immediate action on comprehensive coronavirus relief legislation, including providing direct fiscal assistance to all cities, which is long overdue. President Biden’s American Rescue Plan contains such assistance as part of an aggressive strategy to contain the virus, increase access to life-saving vaccines, and create a foundation for sustainable and inclusive recovery.
American cities and our essential workers have been serving at the frontlines of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic for nearly a year. We have been charged with executing herculean public health efforts and an unprecedented emergency response. Despite immense fiscal pressure, your local government partners oversaw those efforts, while trying to maintain essential services and increase our internal capacity to provide support for residents and businesses who have been crippled by a tanking economy.
And yet, as the economic engines of our country, local governments will be relied upon to lead the longterm economic recovery our nation so desperately needs, even as, with few exceptions, cities have been largely left without direct federal assistance. The lack of adequate support has resulted in budget cuts, service reductions, and job losses. Sadly, nearly one million local government jobs have already been lost during the pandemic. Our essential workers deserve federal relief like any other sector.
The $350 billion in direct relief to state and local governments included in President Biden’s American Rescue Plan would allow cities to preserve critical public sector jobs and help drive our economic recovery. Providing direct, flexible aid to cities is the most efficient and immediate way to help families and their communities who have been suffering for far too long.
Furthermore, cities must be central to a deliberate strategy to accelerate vaccinations throughout the country. We support President Biden’s proposal to mount a national vaccination program and the provision of additional resources to cities to bolster our efforts to contain the spread of the virus.
Your quick action on President Biden’s plan is a crucial step to making meaningful progress in one of the most challenging moments in our country’s history. The United States Conference of Mayors is eager to work with Congress and the incoming Administration to meet this challenge. We encourage you to take up the President’s rescue plan as soon as possible in the 117th Congress.
Thank you for your leadership during this time of national crisis, and please feel free to reach out to our CEO and Executive Director Tom Cochran at 202-744-9110 / firstname.lastname@example.org or Chief of Staff Ed Somers at 202-744-9223 / email@example.com to discuss this priority request.
Full list of signatures can be found here.
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