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City of Tucson breaks down how it will distribute $95-million dollars

Posted at 8:22 PM, May 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-29 13:34:06-04

TUCSON, Ariz. — Mayor Regina Romero's office calls Councilwoman Lane Santa Cruz the architect of the city's $95-million dollar allocation.

"Now we're having to do a lot more cleaning and sanitizing. We have payroll expense reimbursements. Now we needed to invest in technology so that city-workers could work from home. Two or three months from now, we don't know where we're going to be at," Santa Cruz said.

Beginning with what the city calls a 'reserve,' it's $33-million dollars or more than a third of the federal aid provided to the city which will be saved for any needs between now and the end of the year.

"We don't know through December 30th, what those needs are going to look like so we need to make sure that we're putting money aside so that then we can revisit and then allocate with more information."

The biggest cut is going to city operations and services close to $38-million, for public safety salaries, modernizing cyber-security infrastructure, even maintenance on playgrounds to keep them safe for children, among other investments.

"That's going to include employee (COVID-19) testing and contact tracing for us internally to make sure that we're not also helping spread the virus."

More than $22-million will be allocated for people and business.

The community investment and support fund will finance rent and utility assistance, WiFi access for long distance learning and support for non-profits and small businesses.

"We're working with local partners to make that into grants for small businesses that they don't have to pay back. To help them out with rent, or paying employees or just paying the utility bills, keeping them afloat."