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Biden urges city leaders to take advantage of billions in federal relief funds

President Joe Biden on Monday urged local and city governments to continue to use the $130 billion in funds allocated to them from the American Rescue Plan to help during the pandemic. ... Read more»

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Feds giving states $260 million for highway safety

The federal government has announced that it is giving nearly $260 million in grants to states to beef up their highway safety - funding which will comes from the recently enacted bipartisan infrastructure law and be used to support a broad range of traffic safety priorities.... Read more»

A mother needed welfare. Instead, Arizona used assistance funds to take her son.

Each year, Arizona redirects upward of $30 million of its welfare funding to the Department of Child Safety - over $8 million more than the state spends on welfare itself - who then investigate the same low-income families who could have benefited from cash assistance.... Read more»

Congress has a plan for universal pre-K. Will states opt in?

Nearly a fifth of the $3.5 trillion “Build Back Better” plan is dedicated to boost spending on universal pre-K - but how the states implement their programs, or whether they even decide to accept the cash - would have an effect on the quality of education the children receive. ... Read more»

Some Arizona schools sticking with mask mandates, despite Ducey funding threat

Friday was the deadline for Arizona schools to drop mask mandates if they wanted to be eligible for a share of millions in COVID-19 state aid, but at least several school districts in the state were refusing to comply with Gov. Doug Ducey’s demand. ... Read more»

Ducey: Arizona schools won’t get COVID aid funds if they require masks

A day after a judge ruled that a state law barring Arizona schools from requiring masks can’t be enforced until September, Gov. Ducey said school districts enacting temporary mask mandates won’t receive some federal COVID-19 relief money unless they call off those plans.... Read more»1

Electric buses, asphalt and bridges: Politicians jostle for federal transportation cash

Earmarks - money designated for specific projects in congressional spending bills - banished following intense public criticism of corruption and a lack of fairness, are back with new guidelines in the fight over infrastructure funds and four Arizona Democrats have requested nearly $155 million in transportation money.... Read more»

Trump is donating ventilators to countries that don’t need or can’t use them

Nearly 8,000 ventilators are destined for foreign countries as part of Trump’s plan to make the U.S. “king of ventilators.” But public health experts worry the machines are crowding out more urgently needed aid.... Read more»

Tribes: Delayed release of COVID-19 funds hurt coronavirus relief, other efforts

At a time when some Native American communities continue to struggle with the most basic needs, tribal leaders Wednesday called it “an outrage” that tribes had to wait months for coronavirus relief funds.... Read more»

Sinema opposes movement to ‘defund the police’

Democratic U.S. Sen. Kyrsten Sinema opposes proposals to defund police departments, according to her office.... Read more»

Districts, parents still unsure how to safely open Arizona schools

Guidelines for how Arizona school districts can safely reopen for the fall have been released, but at least some parents – and teachers – are questioning how safe it will be. Administrators also wonder how to pay for implementing the changes.... Read more»

GAO: Border officials spent migrant care funds on canines, ATVs, more

Customs and Border Protection officials spent funds that were supposed to go to medical care and migrant processing facilities to pay for computer upgrades, canine units, ATVs and other items instead, a new government report shows.... Read more»

Endangered jaguar at crux of new border-wall fight

Three environmental groups challenging the border wall between the United States and Mexico argued Tuesday in a federal complaint that the plan will completely kill off a population of jaguar.... Read more»

Grant allows Native American nonprofit to expand medical services in Phoenix

More medical services will be available to Native Americans in metro Phoenix, thanks to a $200,000 federal grant awarded to Native American Connections. ... Read more»

Emergency border funds get final OK, after some odd political turns

The final vote included support from 129 Democrats and 176 Republicans, in what one expert called an “overwhelmingly bipartisan” vote to send emergency funding to the departments of Homeland Security, Health and Human Services and others.... Read more»

Judge tosses House challenge to border wall funding

A federal judge denied a House request Monday to freeze funds taken for construction of a wall at the southern border.... Read more»

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