Massachusetts Recovery Update
Week of October 5, 2009
The Massachusetts Recovery Update is a periodic email update of recovery-related news in the Commonwealth. If you find this information useful, please forward it to others and encourage them to subscribe or follow our updates via Twitter, RSS, or http://Mass.Gov/Recovery.
General Program Updates
Preserving Public Safety
On Wednesday, Governor Patrick announced that Massachusetts will spend $8.1 million as a first round of federal stimulus funding to help rehire 127 laid off firefighters across the Commonwealth. This announcement marks the first round of awards to fire departments from the $20 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) discretionary funds the Patrick-Murray Administration set aside specifically to help fire departments address staffing reductions. By earmarking $20 million in federal stimulus funding for municipal fire departments, the Governor is seeking to bolster staffing levels by allowing cities and towns to rehire as many laid off firefighters as possible, prevent further layoffs and address staffing reductions caused by attrition. This grant program gives communities much needed flexibility in dealing with reduced public safety budgets. Read more about Massachusetts' plan to retain firefighting jobs
New Opportunities for Municipalities:
Reducing Homelessness in Massachusetts
Massachusetts will spend $17.9 million in Recovery Act funds from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's Homelessness Prevention and Rapid Re-housing Program. The funds will be distributed to 20 community-based nonprofit organizations across the Commonwealth to address the needs of individuals and families who are homeless or at imminent risk of becoming homeless. "These funds come at a critical time for Massachusetts and compliment our ongoing emergency assistance reform efforts by focusing on permanent housing as the long term solution to end homelessness," said Governor Deval Patrick. "By targeting resources this way, we are not only helping out individuals and families in need, but we are stabilizing neighborhoods, relieving the strain on our shelter system and alleviating escalating costs." Read more about Massachusetts' plan to assist the homeless
Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grants
Applications are now available for the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant. There are two particular opportunities that fall under this program. The first is a competitive sub-grant program for communities with populations less than 35,000. This program will fund solar PV projects, other clean technology projects, thermal efficiency measures in oil or propane heated buildings, and buy-down of performance contracts. The other opportunity is a competitive application to receive technical assistance in the form of Owner's Agents, for which all 351 municipalities may apply
. The Owner's Agents can be used for clean technology project engineering, clean technology third-party power purchase agreements, or for performance contracts. The maximum grant award is $50,000. More information on both opportunities can be found on DOER's website
. Applications for both programs are due December 7, 2009.
Additional ARRA Information for Cities and Towns.
Opportunities for Individuals: Find a Job using JobQuest
Employers who create jobs using Recovery funding must post those job announcements to the Commonwealth's JobQuest system. A wide range of stimulus-related positions--ranging from career counselors to communication specialists are available. This system is constantly updated, so residents should check back for new opportunities.
For the most up to date ARRA business opportunities , head to Comm-PASS, the Commonwealth's sole online procurement record site which supports all bid and grant records related to any ARRA funds distributed by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Comm-PASS is available for use free of charge and provides you with the ability to search for a variety of contracts by either category or department.
For the latest recovery news and updates:
As always, please feel free to visit our website or contact the stimulus office at 617-979-8380 if you have any questions.