On Thursday, March 11th, President Biden signed the American Rescue Plan (ARP), providing $1.9 trillion in economic stimulus to assist in the long-term recovery from the economic and public health impacts related to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“The American Rescue Plan will provide critical relief to Kansas families and businesses who have struggled during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Governor Laura Kelly.While I disagreed on the allocation formula, these funds will allow us to make targeted and strategic investments in childcare, broadband, education, and our business communities to aid our recovery from COVID-19.”

The ARP aims to move beyond the COVID-19 pandemic, return children to school, vaccinate the population, provide direct assistance to families, and stimulate economic growth.

As a part of the American Rescue Plan, the state of Kansas will be eligible for a variety of funding. Below are some of the programs and initiatives available to Kansas; many more will be made available through strategic coordination and investment:  

  • Direct aid to Kansans in the form of $1,400 checks per person for incomes up to $75,000
  • Extension of unemployment benefits
    • The ARP extends benefits from March 14 to September 6
    • Enhanced benefits will stay at $300/week
  • Provide direct housing and nutrition assistance
    • Emergency rental assistance, utility assistance, and homeowners support
    • Key investments in food security, including extending Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits, Women Infants and Children (WI) benefits, and Pandemic-EBT programs
  • Strengthen support for farm communities, growers, and producers
    • Investments in infrastructure that support food safety
    • Debt relief for socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers
  • Expand access to safe and reliable child care through Child Care and Development Block Grant
  • Expand the Child Tax Credit and an improved Earned Income Tax Credit

The federal government will release more information and guidance in the coming weeks regarding funding for Kansas.