American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA)

The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (“ARPA”) (H.R. 1319) is a $1.9 trillion economic stimulus package passed by Congress and signed by President Joe Biden on March 11, 2021, in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and associated economic challenges. First proposed on January 14, 2021, the package builds upon many of the measures in the CARES Act 2020 and in the Consolidated Appropriations Act 2021, including $350 billion in state and local Aid, divided evenly between non-county municipalities and counties.

Initial planning around the use of ARPA funding was presented to the Board of Supervisors on 4/27/2021 as the Preliminary ARPA Expenditure Plan (the "Plan"). In that meeting, it was identified that there would be flexibility and that the Plan would be revisited as priorities change and community needs evolve. Also as part of the Plan, a process for the approval of specific projects and related expenditures was identified. This process calls for specific expenditures to be evaluated and brought to the Board of Supervisors on a periodic basis throughout the eligible period (beginning on March 3, 2021, and end on December 31, 2024) for Board approval.

All ARPA expenses will be evaluated for eligibility based on detailed guidance on the use of ARPA funds from the U.S. Department of Treasury. 

The Plan and general direction from the Board is summarized below. 

$5.8M to Support the Local Economy

The Nevada County Board of Supervisors unanimously allocated 30% of the County’s $19.3 Million allocation from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), approximately $5.8 Million, to support “Community & Economic Resiliency.” The $5.8 Million is intended to offset COVID-19 related economic hardships and disruptions to local businesses and nonprofits and foster economic recovery.

$2.5M for Relief and Recovery 

The “Community Benefit Grants Program” will be funded with up to $2 Million to support community-serving institutions and organizations with macro-grants up to $100,000. Eligible entities that serve families, seniors, or the community at large would be eligible to apply.

Small businesses will once again be eligible to apply for micro-grants up to $5,000 from the Nevada County Relief Fund. The County’s infusion of $250,000 will fund a fifth round for the Relief Fund, which has raised over $1.35 Million over the past year, helping dozens of small businesses and nonprofits countywide. Small businesses will also be eligible to apply for low-interest loans from the “Resilience Fund,” a revolving loan fund administered by the Sierra Business Council. The County plans to seed the loan fund with $250,000. 

$2.5M for Infrastructure Improvements for Economic Development

The Board set aside up to $2.5 Million for a new “Nevada County Economic Recovery Funds.” These funds will advance economic development and community resiliency by investing in infrastructure improvements such as broadband expansion, housing development, wildfire mitigation, and water and sewer systems.

Funding for Outdoor Recreation and Visitor Safety

In recognition of the impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had on local recreation destinations and the outdoor recreation industry, the Board also set aside $800,000 to $1M to enhance public safety and economic development by investing in infrastructure and services at Countywide outdoor recreation destinations. 

COVID Related County Costs Revenue Loss (13.6M)

Examples of expense categories include:

  • Support to Nevada County's Public Health Department.
  • Staffing, equipment/expenses to continue providing services with health and safety of staff and the public.
  • Infrastructure investment to support operations and buildings.
  • Increased support of mental health, nutrition, housing, and homelessness as they intersect with the emergency response.


Current Expenditure Plan

In keeping with the direction established by the Board of Supervisors through the Preliminary ARPA Expenditure Plan, discussion was held at the Board’s 2023 January Workshop, seeking guidance to update the Plan to reflect progress on already approved projects and expenses, along with a recommendation for the allocation of remaining funds. 

Resolution 23-485 was adopted by the Board of Supervisors on September 12, 2023 to formally approve the 2023 Revised ARPA Expenditure Plan and to establish budget appropriation for the implementation of projects in Fiscal Year 2023/34. The full resolution and supporting files can be found here.

Expenditure Plan Status and Detailed Treasury Reports:

Key Links: