Tester to Treasury: Act Immediately, Provide $1.25 Billion in Relief to Montana’s State, Local and Tribal Governments

Tester secured $1.25 billion for Montana’s State-Local Relief Fund in coronavirus legislative package

U.S. Senator Jon Tester today called on Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to immediately provide funds from the State-Local Coronavirus Relief Fund to Montana’s state, local and Tribal governments.

“Montana’s state, local and Tribal governments are fighting on the front lines of this pandemic,” wrote Tester in a letter to Mnuchin. “It is critical that this money is getting swiftly into the hands of the folks that need it. Montana and other states are making the necessary expenditures to combat the COVID-19 public health emergency, and for funds allocated to states proportionally based on population, the Department of Treasury should not need or use the full 30 days allowed in the CARES Act.”

Tester secured $1.25 billion for Montana as a part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which is a part of $150 billion made available to state, local and Tribal governments to set up local relief funds. This funding was not included in Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s initial draft legislation but were added as a result of negotiations by Tester and his colleagues to make sure the package was directed at providing relief to working Montanans and small businesses, not just corporations.

Montana’s $1.25 billion in funding is available directly to the state from the Treasury Department and requires no state or local matching requirement. Montana will be able to use these funds for necessary expenditures to secure Montana’s public health and combat the outbreak, including construction of emergency beds as well as the purchase of personal protective equipment, masks and medical supplies, among others.

Tester has been working tirelessly to ensure that Montana is prepared to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. In the Senate last week, after 72 hours negotiating substantial, bipartisan improvements to COVID-19 stimulus legislation that had previously fallen far short, Tester voted to deliver critical, urgent relief to Montana workers, families, small businesses, hospitals and others hardest hit by the outbreak.

The full text of Tester’s letter to Mnuchin can be found HERE.

Visit tester.senate.gov/coronavirusresouces for a list of resources for Montanans during the COVID-19 outbreak.