Governor Kristi Noem gets another year to sit on her federal coronavirus relief funds. Bob Mercer reports that the coronavirus relief/budget package that Congress passed last week extends the deadline for spending our $1.25 billion in CARES Act aid to December 31, 2021. Even though Governor Noem has talked for months about hoping Congress would extend that spending deadline, the devoted campaigner has been too busy socialiting on jets and rallying young fascists in Florida to make an actual plan for spending all those surplus-fabricating dollars on the extended timeframe:
It’s too soon to say whether Governor Kristi Noem will re-open any categories or create new categories, according to Maggie Seidel, her policy director and a senior advisor. “When we have more, we’ll share it,” Seidel said [Bob Mercer, “States Will Get Another Year to Use Federal Coronavirus Relief Funds, S.D. Official Says,” KELO-TV, 2020.12.29].
Good grief: when Team Noem wants to attack journalists, Seidel can crack out responses on the spot. But when we have actual money to spend, policy to make, and lives and livelihoods in the balance, the Governor’s people aren’t ready to share what, if anything, they plan to do for us. Hmmm… maybe they plan to leave all that money in the bank and squeeze another year’s worth of interest out of money that was supposed to help people suffering from the pandemic and economic slump this year.
The extension that states, tribes, and local governments get to deploy their federal aid does not apply to all other parts of the federal response to coroanvirus and its concomitant recession. The Treasury and Federal Reserve’s authority to dish out loans from the Exchange Stabilization Fund ends tomorrow, meaning some $429 billion will revert back to the Treasury. The CDC’s eviction moratorium extends only to the end of January. The Families First Coronavirus Relief Act’s tax credit to small employers for paid sick leave and family leave extends only to the end of March, and the requirement that employers offer that leave ends now.