State Rep. Stafstrom Highlights Federal Funds To Support City Initiatives

On the last day of the General Assembly session State Rep. Steve Stafstrom, who also serves as House chair of the powerful Judiciary Committee, shares an update about legislative successes that includes leveraging remaining American Rescue Plan funds locally.

Stafstrom communication to constituents:

I’m proud to say we passed a bipartisan spending stabilization plan that will ensure our two-year state budget’s historic tax cuts are protected, and we invest in the priorities that matter to you.

Remember, the two-year budget includes:

  • The Largest Income Tax Cut in State History
  • Investments in Public Education
  • New supports for the IDD community
  • Expansion of Debt-Free Community College
  • A Strong and Vibrant Safety Net of Programs

We used remaining federal American Rescue Plan Act funds to provide support to some important priorities such as:

  • Higher Education – $160 million
  • Early Childcare – $21.8 million
  • Mental Health – $24 million
  • Nonprofits – $50 million

The ARPA funding for Bridgeport includes:

  • City of Bridgeport – $7,000,000

  • University of Bridgeport – $500,000

  • Bridgeport Economic Development Corporation – $350,000

  • Downtown Thursdays in Bridgeport – $200,000

  • Summerfield United Methodist Church – $125,000

  • Bridgeport Youth Lacrosse – $100,000

  • Elevate Bridgeport – $100,000

  • Hoops & Dreams – $75,000

  • Sisters at the Shores – $50,000

  • Bethlehem House Bridgeport/Stratford – $30,000

  • Bridgeport Ballerz – $25,000

  • Bridgeport Pop Warner Football League – $25,000

  • Eastend Popup Market – $10,000

The Education Cost Sharing (ECS) grant formula was also recalculated, so Bridgeport will go from $192,456,792 in FY 2024 to $201,710,496 for FY 2025.

All that and we are putting more than a billion dollars into the state’s Rainy Day Fund and paying down pension debt.


One comment

  1. Rep Steve,
    Spending “other people’s money” is often easier than reducing your personal wealth by deciding from a variety of choices, especially if that is required on a regular basis, either monthly or annually. And if there is enough money for both parties to mark and barter, it gets done, quickly. The final vanishing of ARPA money from the Federal government under a dictum to USE IT OR LOSE IT by an upcoming deadline focused decision making for these funds.

    Looks like some significant attention to youth education, in Bridgeport, from an Educational Cost Sharing formula change to the tune of more than $9 Million. Is that a permanent change to the formula? And while $7 Million to the City as a target is helpful, what is the functional allocation for the year and how will the City account for any and all expected outcomes from these funds? If they are not measured, and available to the public, are they really meaningful? Who performs oversight for this final allocation of ARPA funds and will results get posted along the way? Time will tell.


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