July 28, 2020
Washington, D.C. – The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) released the following statement on the Senate’s proposal for the next round of federal coronavirus relief funds.
“With states facing hundreds of billions of dollars in revenue losses over the next two years, NCSL strongly urges Congress to include additional flexible funds for states in any forthcoming pandemic stimulus proposals. The package of bills introduced in the U.S. Senate yesterday regarding continued efforts to address the COVID-19 crisis, ignores the economic realities in the states by not providing this critical aid. While not all states are experiencing the same level of lost revenues, all are experiencing some degree of economic downturn. States have already made across-the-board budget cuts, while many have furloughed public workers, postponed or canceled contracts, and delayed infrastructure projects. Most have already allocated significant portions of their Coronavirus Relief Funds from the CARES Act, including providing funds to local governments. For many states it will take years to recover from the abrupt drop-off in revenue caused by this pandemic. Rather than disregarding the fiscal realities that currently exist in states, Congress must be part of the solution and provide a robust and flexible funding stream to states. Providing additional flexible assistance will ensure those states hit hard by the pandemic and resultant economic difficulties can continue to provide critical services to, and support for, citizens and businesses.
“As bipartisan negotiations between the Senate and House begin, NCSL looks forward to working with congressional leadership to ensure additional flexible aid to states is made a priority in the final agreement. Healthy states means a healthy nation.”
State Actions to Close Budget Shortfalls in Response to COVID-19 | July 24
State Actions on Coronavirus Relief Funds | July 24
State and Local Coalition Comes Together to Appeal for Federal Aid as Fiscal Year Ends. | June 29
NCSL is a bipartisan organization that serves the legislators and staffs of the states, commonwealths and territories. It provides research, technical assistance and opportunities for policymakers to exchange ideas on the most pressing state issues and is an effective and respected advocate for the interests of the states in the American federal system.