April 28, 2020

Federal CARES Act Money Won't Cover Florida's Revenue Shortfalls, Non-Profit Think Tank Warns [WJCT]

Ryan Dailey of WJCT writes:

"Non-profit think-tank the Florida Policy Institute, which describes itself as non-partisan, is warning state leadership that money earmarked for Florida through the federal CARES act won’t cover state budgetary shortfalls.

A massive spike in unemployment will lead to depressed sales tax revenue, and the Institute’s analysts claim COVID-19 will cause disruption worse than that of the Great Recession. Out of a $150 billion federal coronavirus relief fund for states and local governments, $4.6 billion is going to Florida.

Although, none of that money can go toward supplementing revenue losses for the state, says the Policy Institute’s CEO Sadaf Knight [emphasis added].

'It included some stipulations on which expenses would be allowable under the coronavirus Relief Fund, or CRF, and it did not include spending to directly address revenue shortfalls,' Knight said on a media call held by the Institute Tuesday.  This was confirmed last week in additional guidance that was published from the U.S. Department of Treasury, which states that CRF funds cannot be used to backfill revenue losses and shore up state budgets.'"


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