COVID-19 Equites Program
PROVIDENCE, RI – Tonight, at a special meeting of the Providence City Council, members approved the final passage of the $10 million COVID-19 Equities Program budget on a vote of 10 to 1, with 4 Council members absent. The $10 million budget is funded by the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) and is a collaborative effort between the City Council and Mayor Jorge Elorza’s administration for January 6, 2022, to December 31, 2024. The budget comes after months of work by the city’s 13-member Municipal Reparations Commission. A portion of the funding, $1.75 million, will be under the guidance and oversight of the United Way, with the creation of the United Way COVID-19 Equity Fund. The goal of the fund is to attract new investments and create a generational impact.
“The road to tonight’s passage was not simple or easy. But I am proud of the work and compromise that helped achieve opportunities for generations to come,” said Councilwoman and Deputy Majority Leader Mary Kay Harris (Ward 11). “I feel these funds will truly help narrow the racial equity gaps when it comes to education and home ownership here in Providence.”
ProvPort Tax Agreement/Lease extension
Also tonight, the city council received a proposal for a tax exemption agreement ordinance for ProvPort, Inc. and a resolution authorizing a 30 year lease extension for ProvPort. Both the ordinance and resolution were received by the Council and sent to the finance committee for further review.