February 17, 2021 Jim Kenney Office of the Mayor
By: Mayor Paige Cognetti (Scranton), Mayor Jim Kenney (Philadelphia), Mayor William Peduto (Pittsburgh), Mayor Derek Slaughter (Williamsport), and Mayor Danene Sorace (Lancaster)
As mayors of Pennsylvania cities, we witness the human toll the pandemic takes every day it stretches on. We see households shedding family members, jobless staff struggling to make ends meet, children caught at house and remoted, and companies closing their doorways for good. Across our Commonwealth, residents proceed to undergo.
We see this ache on daily basis. We see it within the household ready within the snow for his or her weekly field of meals, the elementary college pupil who hasn’t signed on for on-line studying in weeks, and the small business proprietor who has lastly laid off their final two staff after preventing to remain open for months.
It’s time for our Congressional leaders to step up.
It has been greater than a year because the first circumstances of COVID-19 have been detected in America, and the anniversary of Pennsylvania’s preliminary circumstances is shortly approaching. In this time, the aid Pennsylvania and our cities have obtained from the federal authorities has been vital. Unfortunately, way more funding continues to be wanted for American communities to get better and thrive.
Each of our cities has been pressured to make troublesome finances cuts within the wake of COVID-19, and with out further federal aid our residents will undergo even additional. Congress has the chance to go huge with its subsequent aid bundle and to offer the assist that the American folks want. Experts agree that the hazard on this second isn’t going huge sufficient—a lesson realized throughout the Great Recession.
President Biden’s American Rescue Plan lays out a imaginative and prescient to handle the continuing COVID emergency, and it is precisely the sort of complete, daring plan Pennsylvania wants. The American public is vastly supportive of the American Rescue Plan. A recent Quinnipiac poll discovered that almost 7 in 10 Americans favor passing the President’s American Rescue Plan, together with 68 % of independents. They know what we all know—that Congress must “go big” to get our communities the assistance we desperately want.
Perhaps extra essential than the rest proper now, the American Rescue Plan would assist us vaccinate extra folks at a faster tempo. Expanded and coordinated vaccination efforts are completely important to chart a path out of the pandemic nightmare. By prioritizing the well being of our most susceptible residents and restoring a way of security and confidence among the many public, we’ll be capable of safely reopen our colleges sooner and start rebuilding our native economies.
The plan will even assist working households that proceed to battle by offering direct funds and enhanced unemployment advantages, rental help and an prolonged eviction moratorium, and meals assist. It additionally helps our communities’ small companies. These packages will assist our neighbors preserve a roof over their heads and meals on their tables.
A vital aspect of President Biden’s plan is direct assist to state and native governments of all sizes. Local governments’ revenues are severely diminished, and we see few, if any, indicators of hope for bettering our monetary position in 2021. Essential providers reminiscent of public well being, public security, and sanitation are in danger. We cannot enable partisan politics to make us overlook what we realized from the final recession: cities are financial engines for his or her areas, and never spending sufficient on federal stimulus will lead to cuts on the native stage that sluggish the tempo of financial recovery in the long term.
Congress should act, and so they should act quickly. Our communities can’t wait one other day. We waited months between the primary aid bundle in March 2020 and the second in December, and thousands and thousands of Americans suffered consequently. Congress alone has the ability to alleviate the ache many Americans are experiencing, and they need to train it at once.
We encourage all Pennsylvanians to contact their Congressional representatives and allow them to know, the message from Pennsylvania is evident: we want our federal representatives to assist swift passage of the American Rescue Plan so we are able to beat again the virus and pursue a speedy and inclusive recovery. It merely can’t wait.
This press launch was produced by the City of Philadelphia.The views expressed listed here are the writer’s personal.