Syracuse Mayor unveils his plan to spend $123M of federal stimulus money

Local News

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh revealed his plan Friday morning for the $123 million the city is receiving from the American Rescue Plan Act. 

The plan included over 30 initiatives that funds will be allocated to over a three-year period. 

These initiatives were broken down into four main categories:

  1. Supporting children, families, and neighborhoods- $34.8 million
  2. Transforming infrastructure and public spaces – $29.8 million 
  3. Investing in jobs and economic recovery- $12.3 million 
  4. Enhancing government resilience and response- $46 million

This federal money was given to local governments to help them bounce back from the pandemic therefore, over a third of the money will go to the city to help them recover from lost revenue. 

That still leaves millions of dollars the city is planning to put to good use sooner rather than later. 

Mayor Walsh says housing is a top priority, the plan including $14 million for reviving and rebuilding homes and apartments and $7 million to support existing homeowners. 

“A lot of our housing funding, the funding that we’ve set aside for our homeowners, for our property owners, we want to get that into the hands of our property owners as quickly as possible so they can be making investments into their properties,” he said.

The plan also looks to invest more into youth with money going toward the Summer Youth Employment and Fellows Program.

“One of the reasons we wanted to fund here is because there are some kids who are currently slipping through the cracks of our current programs including younger children 12-14,” Walsh said.  “This is an area where sadly we are seeing 12-year-olds, 13-year-olds, 14-year-olds involved in violent crime and horrific incidents, so we need to get our young people at a younger age and this funding will help us to do that.” 

The plan also allocates money to workforce development programs like Syracuse Build and Syracuse Surge and infrastructure projects like the municipal sidewalk program. 

Another major infrastructure project the city will be putting money into is the I-81 project. While the project is largely being handled by federal dollars, Mayor Walsh says the Rescue Plan will pay detail to more than just the roadway. 

“We’ve heard loud and clear from the community and we share their concerns that we don’t just want that property being given out to the highest bidder, we want to make sure we are maximizing that opportunity to support the type of development that we all want to see here including making sure that the people who are living in the shadow of that viaduct continue to have a place to live in that neighborhood if they so choose,” Walsh said.  

The city has already received half of the money from the federal government and is looking to put it to use immediately. For Mayor Walsh’s full plan, click here.

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