Politics and the City: Rescue Plan Act gives city “awful lot” of spending options

Full and original article posted on Telegram.com

The meat of the fiscal 2022 budget discussion is still about a month out, but with an estimated $230 million due to come the city’s way from the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan Act, it’s going to be a budget season like no other.

Like many other municipalities across the country, Worcester’s overall financial picture during the COVID-19 pandemic has not turned out to be as dire as it could have been.

To be sure, certain sectors of city government have taken a hit — local receipts are lower than anticipated with more than half of the fiscal year behind us. In particular, hotel and meals taxes, permits and licensing revenue, and interest income are all running below projections for fiscal 2021.

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