2020 was difficult to navigate, but nothing could prepare anyone for the challenges that hit due to the pandemic. Luckily, for local government units such as counties, municipalities, towns, and other units below the State level, there is CARES Act funding.
On Thursday, March 11, President Biden signed into effect a 1.9 trillion-dollar stimulus bill, $350 billion of it designated to state and local government.
Since last March, the local government was hit extremely hard with the pandemic’s effects, leaving 1.3 million people without jobs. Forced to hold processes together with some bubble gum and duct tape or implement a short-term fix due to budget restrictions, the CARES Act funding for local jurisdictions allows decisionmakers to regroup and modernize workflows and processes for well past the days of the pandemic. Due to limited resources because of lay-offs and furloughs, more is required from employees and this includes wearing many different hats, which makes technology a necessity.
Software that offers deeper insights into spending and operations to increase efficiency and allocate resources properly is paramount. It is not only answering the question of what do we have, but taking it further to how do we use it and what area needs it most? Increased demand for contactless methods means online portals for local businesses and your constituents to keep up with their needs. While implementing technology may seem scary, the time to modernize is now, and it is possible for everyone to learn if you have the right programs and the right people to help you get there.
The deadline to submit for certification was extended to December 30, 2020, so we hope jurisdictions with eligibility jumped on this opportunity. It is time to say “goodbye” to those legacy systems and “hello” to solutions that ensure resources are being allocated precisely with a deeper dive into the real needs to better the future of the city, county, and its constituents.