Ivey calls special session on remaining COVID relief funds

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Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey has called lawmakers into special session to spend more than $500 million in pandemic relief funds.

Ivey made the announcement Tuesday, and the special session begins Wednesday.

The state has $580 million remaining from the state’s first installment from the federal American Rescue Plan.

Lawmakers are considering a plan to steer large sums to water and sewer projects, health care costs and broadband expansion.

Alabama came under criticism last year for using $400 million — nearly 20% of the state’s total $2.1 billion allocation from the American Rescue Plan — for prison construction.

Ivey issued the following statement regarding the move:

“While states like Alabama are making record economic comebacks, Congress and the Biden White House are wanting our country to spend more and more federal dollars, and now we are tasked with allocating the American Rescue Plan Act funds. I have made clear, that unlike Washington, D.C., Alabama will be wise with these one-time, federal dollars.

“I again urge the members of the Legislature to direct these funds to meet some of Alabama’s biggest challenges like statewide broadband connectivity, water and sewer infrastructure, as well as investing funds in our hospitals, nursing homes and other health care providers.

“We must be smart with these one-time, federal dollars by wisely investing – not just casually spending them. This is not free money.”


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