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How D.C. debt discussion impacts Lee County

debt ceiling
Posted at 8:33 PM, May 26, 2023
and last updated 2023-05-26 20:33:38-04

LEE COUNTY, Fla. — As lawmakers in Washington D.C. work on a deal to raise the national debt ceiling, the discussion is impacting Lee County's budget.

"We are recommending the re-allocation of ARPA (American Rescue Plan Act) funds in light of the debt ceiling negotiations in D.C.," said Assistant County Manager Glenn Sayler.

The debt limit talks could impact critical funds from the American Rescue Plan, also known as the Covid-19 Stimulus Package.

Saylor said lawmakers are looking to take funds from ARPA and put them towards projects that can be worked on immediately to ensure the money granted to the county is used efficiently, and not lost.

Lee County currently has $27 million in existing project funds, which leaders want to ensure are carried out. Some projects being funded by ARPA include Fort Myers Beach utilities and cyber security assessments for county facilities.

$27 million is also the amount of ARPA money Lee County wants to use for projects such as the Bob Janes Empowerment Center, and EMT training and funding.

Saylor said when a deal is reached on Capitol Hill, the county will have a better idea of how much money it has to work with.