Transformative $154 Million in American Rescue Plan Funding Approved

Published on November 29, 2022

Helps set path for vital Denver programs including investments in housing, homelessness, kids and mental health.

DENVER — Late yesterday City Council approved the Hancock Administration’s proposal to allocate $154 million in new American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds to be spent through 2026. The passage of the federal funds includes 32 programs through multiple Denver agencies, with half of the new funds going toward housing stability and homelessness resolution.

“As we have bounced back from the pandemic, these investments will ensure those who faced disproportionate harm from a challenging health and economic climate will continue to see recovery support for themselves, their families and their communities,” Mayor Michael B. Hancock said. “These funds are an equitable, transparent opportunity to help us find housing for the unhoused, keep families in their homes, and address multiple public health and safety challenges our city is currently facing.”

Below is a summary of planned transformative program spending:

  • $77.73 million for Housing Stability and Homelessness Resolution Support. Projects include:
    • $20 million for down payment assistance and developing a pipeline of affordable homeownership for households impacted by past redlining practices.
    • $23.25 million for supporting acquisition of hotels or properties for housing navigation centers as a bridge to help people exit homelessness
    • $20 million for supporting acquisition of hotels or properties for supportive housing units.
    • $14.48 million to continue the Safe Outdoor Spaces program, the Safe Parking program, and the rehousing assistance.
  • $38.79 million for Vulnerable Populations, Community Health, and Safety Support with:
    • $20 million to improve behavioral health and substance use outcomes through behavioral health infrastructure and network adequacy.
    • $4.81 million for youth violence prevention, youth mental health support, and out-of-school programming.
  • $23.8 million for Business, Worker, and Nonprofit Assistance with:
    • $10 million to ensure community businesses can continue serving current and future generations within Denver's neighborhoods.
    • $1.4 million for youth employment programming employment opportunities such as attainment of credentials and securing employment with promotional opportunities following secondary education.
    • $2 million for smaller nonprofits, as well as arts and cultural institutions to continue in their recovery.
  • $14.24 million for Assorted Expenditures that includes funding for first responder safety equipment and program evaluation.

A full list of the proposals can be found here in a recent presentation to city council.

In a recent report the U.S. Treasury notes that the City and County of Denver exemplified best practices for “engaging underserved communities” in their outreach to best determine what programs could best serve our community. The city heard from over 12,000 stakeholders and weighted the responses given by those stakeholders in determining the projects and was recognized by the US Treasury Department as a national example of outreach. The category given the most programming dollars also received the most significant level of response from the community: Housing Stability & Homelessness Resolution Support.

Denver must allocate both ARPA installments, totaling $308 million in local relief funds, by the end of 2024 and spend them by the end of 2026. Denver’s robust progress toward transformational change in our community through use of ARPA funds will continued to be detailed in full annual reports submitted to the US Treasury, including 2022’s that can be found here here. Additionally, more can be seen about progress on the programs in Denver's regularly updated American Rescue Plan Funding Dashboard and story map.

By utilizing emergency and federal assistance, Denver continues to prioritize, as part of Mayor Hancock’s RISE Denver, an inclusive and sustainable economy. Programs focus on the health and safety, directing resources to public health, food assistance, economic recovery, and serving vulnerable residents through shelter, housing, and individual support. 

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