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How will $1.9T Stimulus Package Impact Aroostook County?

Published: Mar. 16, 2021 at 11:51 AM EDT
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PRESQUE ISLE, Maine (WAGM) - Money from the new 1.9 trillion-dollar stimulus package could provide some relief to municipalities in the County.

COVID-19 relief is on the way. According to Jim Gardner, President of the Maine Municipal Association, the amount of money each town and city receives, is based on population.

“There’s about 233 million that’s been allotted to the towns and cities in the state of Maine,” Gardner said.

Gardner says, out of the total, an estimated $118 million will be split between entitlement cities such as Auburn, Bangor, and Portland. As for non-entitlement communities with less than 50,000 people...

“There’s another $115 million that will be in direct payments to those non entitlement communities,” Gardner said. “Such as Easton, Presque Isle, Caribou, Fort Kent and throughout the county.”

Within the $1.9 trillion package, there is funding for emergency rental assistance, childcare, and money to help reopen schools. Jason Parent, CEO of the Aroostook County Action Program says, within the stimulus package, there are other areas that will benefit the County.

“The child tax credit that we’re hoping are going to lift families out of poverty,” Parent said. “Many families who are experiencing challenges, that additional child tax credit is going to be especially helpful for them.”

Parent says he is concerned about other aspects as well.

“What is available for homeowners in that? We have heard a lot of individuals who are challenged with and are struggling who are homeowners, who don’t have similar assistance that is provided through the rental assistance program,” Parent adds. “We’re anxious to see what supports if any are there for them in terms of utility assistance or other assistance that is currently being provided to those who rent.”

Exact breakdowns of aid coming to Maine are not yet available. However, Gardner says these numbers are promising as folks look to bounce back from the pandemic.

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