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December 3, 2020
Rachel Davis, Office of Mayor Sam Liccardo, 408.712.9149, firstname.lastname@example.org
San José, Calif. - Mayor Sam Liccardo has joined mayors from four states, representing nearly seven million people, to call on Congress for additional COVID-19 relief legislation during the current lame duck session, saying "This is not about politics – it's about people's lives."
"Congress is quibbling while our cities burn. Americans critically need Congress to approve a relief package to save hard-working small business owners, struggling renters, and desperate families," said Mayor Liccardo in reference to the group's efforts.
In addition to San Jose, the cities are Berkley (CA), Boise (ID), Eugene (OR), Everett, (WA), Fresno (CA), Oakland (CA), Portland (OR), Sacramento (CA), San Diego (CA), San Francisco (CA), Seattle (WA) and West Hollywood (CA).
The group is asking congressional leadership to "prioritize funding to assist individuals and families in need, provide financial assistance to small businesses and organizations, and assist local governments."
They go on to write "we need to recognize that Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC), people with disabilities, the undocumented, people experiencing houselessness, and people experiencing poverty and housing insecurity have been disproportionally affected by this crisis."
The mayors' detail three key areas where relief is particularly critical:
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Assistance to Individuals and Families – "Families kept from work or impacted by unemployment due to COVID-19 face housing instability, food insecurity, and numerous other needs. We need you to help prevent a tidal wave of evictions and foreclosures across this country by passing legislation that provides emergency rental assistance, mortgage assistance, and programs to prevent COVID-19-related evictions and foreclosures. We are also seeing enormous demand at our nonprofit partners and food banks which demand need additional funding and expanded access to the USDA Food and Nutrition Service Programs. And as the virus surges, we ask that you also support an extension of the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation program, which is keeping individuals and families financially afloat."
Assistance to Small Businesses and Organizations – "We urge additional funding for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and transparency requirements to ensure that banks are providing loans to BIPOC- and women-owned businesses. Additionally, we need support for businesses for whom the PPP doesn't work, such as restaurants and performance venues."
Assistance to Local Governments – "Local governments need direct and flexible financial assistance in order to continue providing vital services to our communities. Nearly 70% of cities have not received CARES Act funding to date and over 70% are instituting staffing cuts to meet budgetary restraints. During a time of increased need for municipal services to ensure our communities weather the public health emergency and economic slowdown, cities have been hamstrung by restricted access to federal stimulus funding. We ask that you provide financial assistance directly to local governments, utilizing HUD's Community Development Block Grant Entitlement Program formula as a guide. Additionally, assistance to the nation's transit agencies, which are lifelines will continue to allow front line workers to get to jobs and to help the economy recover. Without direct financial stimulus, local governments will not be able to meet the basic and expanding needs of our communities as the pandemic worsen."
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The Mayors Signing the Letter:
|Mayor Ted Wheeler, City of Portland||Mayor Jenny Durkan, City of Seattle|
|Mayor London Breed, City of San Francisco||Mayor Libby Schaaf, City of Oakland|
|Mayor Sam Liccardo, City of San José||Mayor Lauren McLean, City of Boise|
|Mayor Lee Brand, City of Fresno||Mayor Darrell Steinberg, City of Sacramento|
|Mayor Lucy Vinis, City of Eugene||Mayor Jesse Arreguin, City of Berkeley|
|Mayor Cassie Franklin, City of Everett||Mayor Lindsey Horvath, City of West Hollywood|
|Mayor-elect Todd Gloria, City of San Diego|
The full letter can be found here.
About the City of San José
With more than one million residents, San José comprises the 10th largest city in the United States, and one of its most diverse cities. San José's transformation into a global innovation center in the heart of Silicon Valley has resulted in the world's greatest concentration of technology talent and development.
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