ARRA, President Barack Obama’s American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, gives the City new ways to get ready for the future. It contains new funding for a variety of infrastructure, including money for programs that focus on the reducing energy consumption: a blizzard of weatherization funds; loan guarantees for innovative technology; competitive grants for investing in electric vehicles; pilot programs for personal cars using alternative fuels; and money to expand broadband availability.
As I have noted earlier, some of the ARRA programs do not yet have rules, descriptions, or deadlines. When they get them, we will apply for them.
We already know that the City will receive $3.7 million in new Energy Block Grant funding and $40 million in funding to sustain aging infrastructure and bring it to modern standards.
While Metro will not get the operating subsidy it desperately needs from ARRA, Metro will get $39 million to fix Eads Bridge and the other parts of the original MetroLink alignment.
The St. Louis Housing Authority will receive $18 million in capital funding—14 million of this to completely rehabilitate James House in the 4th Ward, and the remainder to replace public housing in other new developments.
(I plan to discuss the importance of ARRA — and some new directions for St. Louis in Friday’s State of the City Speech.)