Fishers receiving $13 million fewer federal COVID-19 relief funds than expected

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Fishers will receive approximately $13 million less through the federal American Rescue Plan than expected. The city has been allocated $6.9 million, although initial estimates in early March indicated that Fishers would receive nearly $20 million.

Fadness

“We received our initial estimates in the March or April timeframe, then we got our final notice from the (U.S. Dept. of the) Treasury after they had changed some designations, and we saw a significant decrease,” Fishers Mayor Scott Fadness said. “And it is a bit quizzical when you look at other communities similar to our size around the state getting 10 times the amount that we are.”

The cities with the three largest deficits between expectations and reality are all in Hamilton County. Fishers and Carmel are the only two cities in Indiana to be receiving more than $8 million less than initially announced. Noblesville is receiving $7.3 million less than expected.

South Bend had the fourth-largest deficit at $4.3 million less, but South Bend is receiving $58.9 million in funding, nearly triple what Carmel ($7.5 million), Fishers ($6.9 million) and Noblesville ($6.2 million) are receiving combined.

When initially announced, funding for most cities was tied to each city’s population.

Created through the American Rescue Plan, the Coronavirus Local Fiscal Recovery Fund will distribute $350 billion in relief to various municipalities to help cover COVID-19-related expenses and promote economic recovery. In the March estimates, the three Hamilton County cities were in a population-based category.

But the U.S. Dept. of the Treasury adjusted the designations of some cities, including Fishers, and moved them from the population based-category into a county-based category, costing Fishers $13 million.

“Because our money from community block grants flows through the county, the treasury provided a different designation for us, and that’s what reduced our funding significantly,” Fadness said. 

Despite Carmel, Fishers and Noblesville being the fifth-, sixth- and 12th-most populous cities in the Indiana, they will receive the 21st-, 22nd- and 25th-most funding in the state.

“All three of us have been around long enough to not spend the money before you get it. We didn’t have any obligations that we weren’t able to meet, but at the same time it’s very frustrating,” Fadness said.

Fadness said Fishers was going to use the funds for one-time capital infrastructure improvements and projects. Fadness and other city officials have reached out to the federal government and Indiana Sen. Todd Young’s office to see if the funding designations can be reevaluated.

The 25 Indiana cities documented in the May Treasury report of appropriated funds, with each city’s estimated population from 2019.

CITY

Pop.

Expected Funds

Actual Funds

Diff.

Ind. Fund Rank

Indianapolis

876K

237.4 M

232.4 M

-5 M

1

Fort Wayne

270K

50.7 M

50.8 M

+100K

6

Evansville

118K

67.5 M

64.5 M

-3 M

3

South Bend

102K

63.2 M

58.9 M

-4.3 M

4

Carmel

101K

21.1 M

7.5 M

-13.6M

21

Fishers

95K

19.9 M

6.9 M

-13 M

22

Bloomington

86.8K

22.3 M

22.1 M

-200K

11

Hammond

75.5K

53.3 M

51.4 M

-1.9 M

5

Gary

74.9K

83.7 M

80.3 M

-3.4 M

2

Lafayette

71.7K

16.7 M

15.9 M

-800K

16

Muncie

68 K

31.8 M

32.3 M

+500K

8

Noblesville

64.7K

13.5 M

6.2 M

-7.3 M

25

Terre Haute

60.6K

38.2 M

35.9 M

-2.3 M

7

Greenwood

59.5K

9 M

6.6 M

-2.4 M

24

Kokomo

58 K

20.6 M

19.9 M

-700K

12

Anderson

54.8K

23.2 M

23.1 M

-100 K

10

Elkhart

52.4K

19 M

18 M

-1 M

13

W. Lafayette

51 K

11.1 M

11.4 M

+300K

19

Mishawaka

50.4K

12 M

11.9 M

-100K

17

Columbus

48 K

7.8 M

8.6 M

+800K

20

New Albany

36.8K

16.8 M

16.9 M

+100K

14

Goshen

34.2K

6.8 M

6.7 M

-100K

23

Michigan City

31 K

16.7 M

16.5 M

-200K

15

East Chicago

27.8K

33.4 M

31.2 M

-2.2M

9

LaPorte

21.6K

11.7 M

11.5 M

-200K

18

Fishers funding compared to other cities of similar size around the country.

CITY

State

Expected Funds

Actual Funds

Diff.

Fall River

MA

73 M

69. 6 M

-3.4 M

Asheville

NC

26.1 M

26.3 M

+200 K

Champaign

IL

25.1 M

25.3 M

+200 K

Miami Beach

FL

23.9 M

23.6 M

-300 K

Norwalk

CT

22.1 M

22 M

-100 K

Fort Smith

AR

22.5 M

21.2 M

-1.3 M

San Leandro

CA

19.2 M

18.6 M

-600 K

Nashua

NH

16.6 M

16.1 M

-500 K

Tracy

CA

17.8 M

14.8 M

-3 M

Deltona

FL

15.2 M

14 M

-1.2 M

Menifee

CA

13 M

13.2 M

+200 K

Kirkland

WA

20.3

10.2 M

-10.1M

Macomb

MI

9 M

7.2 M

-1.8 M

Fishers

IN

19.9 M

6.9 M

-13 M


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