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Helpful ARPA resources to review NOW!

ARPA reporting resources now available

The first “Project and Expenditures” reporting deadline is April 30, 2022. Non-entitlement units of government (NEUs; units under 50,000 population, which includes all but eight of Michigan’s largest townships) and seven of Michigan’s “metropolitan city” recipient townships must file one report per year through Dec. 31, 2026. (One Michigan “metropolitan city” township with an allocation more than $10 million must file quarterly; the interim final rule had required all metropolitan cities to file reports quarterly.) The first report period will cover March 3, 2021, through March 21, 2022. Subsequent annual reports will cover the calendar year, and continue to have an April 30 deadline. Because federal reporting is likely new to many townships, all townships are urged to begin preparing now. Here’s where you can start:

  • Review the Project and Expenditure Report User Guide, which provides step-by-step guidance on how to submit your reporting information, available information and resources, designating the person or people responsible for completing the reports and necessary information.
  • Determine who from your township will be responsible for completing the reporting, which will take place through U.S. Treasury’s online portal. The user guide notes that three roles—account administrator, point of contact and authorized representative—are needed for reporting. However, the township can choose to appoint one person for all three roles, or designate individuals for multiple roles.
  • To access Treasury’s reporting portal, each individual who will be involved in reporting must first register on login.gov. A Login.gov registration guide walks you through how to create an account. (If your township has an ID.me registration already, you do not need to register on login.gov and can access the portal through that site.)
  • For the first report only, NEUs must also submit a copy of budget documents for how they calculated their top-line budget during the initial application process, along with copies of the signed Awards and Conditions and Title VI documents included with the application materials. An NEU Supporting Documents User Guide has also been created to walk through that process.

Additional guidance documents, resources and webinars are available on U.S. Treasury’s “Recipient Compliance and Reporting Responsibilities” webpage. MTA is also planning to create an “explainer” video to walk townships through the reporting process; however, we urge all townships to review the guidance and begin their preparations now. 

U.S. Treasury Webinars

ARPA Final Rule released—GREATLY simplifies and broadens township's use of funds

Townships’ ability to put #AmericanRescuePlan dollars to use in their communities was clarified—and GREATLY broadened and simplified—under the The U.S. Department of the Treasury final rule announced today. Previously, most general government services or projects could only be funded if the township could project or demonstrate “revenue loss” as defined in the ARPA and prior interim final rule. According to a final rule overview, recipients that select a new up-to-$10 million “standard allowance may use that amount—in many cases their full award—for government services, with streamlined reporting requirement,” without having to demonstrate any “revenue loss.” Because all but one township has an allocation less than $10 million, this means that your township can elect to use its full allocation for general township services, projects and uses. Additional changes streamline the premium pay use, and broaden the infrastructure and economic impact categories. 

Treasury is hosting webinars to brief and answer questions about the Final Rule. Please attend one of the following webinars for a live presentation. If Treasury reaches RSVP capacity and you cannot attend a webinar or prefer to be briefed at your convenience, Treasury will post a recording of the webinar hosted on January 7, 2022.

IMPORTANT UPDATE: NEU reporting deadline extended until April 2022

Non-entitlement unit (NEU) townships will have until April 30, 2022, to file their first “Project and Expenditure Report” for their American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) dollars, following an extension announced by the U.S. Department of Treasury this morning. The federal department made the decision to push back the reporting deadline following feedback and comments from state and “metropolitan city” recipients (which includes Michigan’s eight largest townships), following their Aug. 31 interim reporting deadline. MTA will continue to provide updates to our members as guidance is released.

MTA continues coalition work to leverage ARPA funding
As a member of a statewide coalition, MTA continues to work to gain support for a comprehensive plan to leverage the state’s nearly $6 billion in federal ARPA funding. The plan, From Rescue to Prosperity: A Roadmap to Michigan’s Future, focuses the state’s ARPA resources in a coordinated manner across five key areas: infrastructure, fiscal health, thriving communities, strong economy, and public health and safety. We encourage township officials to seek the support of their legislators as the plan would provide direct investment across multiple sectors and maximize the one-time ARPA dollars. Learn more about the plan here.

Guidance and resources for townships

Communities with Qualified Census Tracts have additional uses for ARPA funds to help offset impacts of the pandemic on certain populations, including low-income communities. A listing of all townships with QCTs is available here.

More than 98% of Michigan townships have applied to access their American Rescue Plan funds

More than 98% of Michigan's "non-entitlement unit" townships (those under 50,000 population) applied and have received the first half of their allocation of federal COVID relief funding through the American Rescue Plan Act. The second half will be distributed no later than 12 months after the initial allocation.

Townships have time to make decisions on uses

The funding has very broad flexibility for its uses and does not have to be obligated until Dec. 31, 2024. The funds will be helpful in shoring up, expanding or simply funding your local services. State Treasury, for example, believes that most local units of government-using the formula for revenue loss-will have demonstrable lost revenue due to the pandemic. By showing lost revenue, your township can use the funds on most current township services, to the extent of that loss.

As additional guidance is provided and communities around the state and country begin to make decisions on how to best put this funding to use, MTA will continue to provide updates and information for townships.

Michigan Department of Treasury ARPA Webinar and Presentation
Treasury also partnered with Michigan Townships Association, Michigan Municipal League and Michigan Association of Counties for a local government webinar that included guidance and information on receipt of funds, eligible and ineligible uses, reporting requirements and calculation of revenue loss, as well as how local units can strategically utilize ARPA funds. Watch this helpful webinar here and view the presentation here.

National Association of Towns and Townships webinar recording: Guidance on ARPA's State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds

The National Association of Towns and Townships (NATaT) hosted a webinar offering guidance on the American Rescue Plan Act's pandemic relief resources for townships. This video will help you understand how local fiscal recovery funds can be accessed and spent. MTA will be hosting additional webinars and will continue to share information as it becomes available.

Inside the ARPA

The ARPA contains $1.9 trillion for the coronavirus relief package with $350 billion allocated for state, local and tribal governments to mitigate the fiscal impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and provide vital services. Local governments can use ARPA funds to cover costs incurred by Dec. 31, 2024, to:

• Provide government services affected by a revenue reduction during the pandemic (in the most recent full fiscal year prior to the emergency); thus, a local unit may use the money to replace the amount of revenue lost during the pandemic compared to the prior full fiscal year

• Make necessary investments in water, sewer and broadband infrastructure

• Respond to the COVID-19 emergency and address its negative economic impacts, including aid to households, small businesses, nonprofits, and industries such as tourism and hospitality

• Provide premium pay-up to $13 an hour or $25,000 per worker-in additional wages for essential employees performing an essential function in the pandemic

The ARPA prohibits the use of the funds for pension or to offset revenue loss due to a tax cut.

The ARPA also includes $10 billion to states for a Critical Infrastructure Projects Program, with Michigan expected to receive $250 million. The monies are to be used for projects that would directly enable work, education and health monitoring-including remote options-in response to COVID-19. Examples provided during the legislative discussion included water, sewer and broadband.