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U.S. COVID-19 Local Aid Emerges as Key Social Policy Tool

it's causing Biden's spending plan to stall

Philadelphia is plugging a massive budget hole opened by COVID-19, avoiding layoffs and the closing of swimming pools. St. Louis is handing out $500 checks to 10,000 needy families. Denver has set aside $28 million for affordable housing units amid spiraling rental costs.

With revenues still crimped by COVID-19, these U.S. cities can fund those initiatives thanks to a $350 billion bucket of coronavirus aid money for state and local governments enacted a year ago Friday.

As President Joe Biden's ambitious social and climate spending plans languish amid congressional resistance and Washington's shifting focus to the war in Ukraine, the American Rescue Plan's State and Local Fiscal Recovery Fund is emerging as his administration's top poverty-fighting tool.

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