After months of resisting calls to begin spending some of an estimated $1.1 billion in new federal pandemic aid, Gov. Daniel J. McKee recently said he’s ready to begin doing so.
McKee said the state should set aside 10% of the windfall for immediate needs, beginning with helping still-struggling small businesses. He says Rhode Island is the only state in the Northeast that has not spent any of this latest round of federal aid.
“It’s time to make a down payment on Rhode Island’s economic comeback,” said McKee, during his Sept. 21 announcement. “The time is now to get these dollars out – before the end of the year.”
The General Assembly would have to come back into session to approve the spending request.
Legislative leaders have said they’ll review McKee’s proposal but have not committed to returning for a vote this year.
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