Regional + City Planning alumnus Joseph Laws was recently interviewed by The Oklahoman about new COVID-19 relief funds available to Oklahoma businesses through the American Rescue Plan Act. Joseph is the OKC Rescue Program manager at the Alliance for Economic Development of Oklahoma City. In this position, he supports local businesses and neighborhoods through equitable economic recovery around technical assistance, improvements, and physical changes related to pandemic mitigation.
About $20 million in federal relief funds will be distributed by the Alliance through the OKC Rescue Program that Joseph manages. The American Rescue Plan Act requires certain funds to be reserved for businesses located in qualifying census tracts, where at least half of the household incomes are less than 60% of the area median income. The Alliance is also including minority-owned businesses in their funding distribution.
“There are a lot of minority and disadvantaged groups that live within qualified census tracts, but there are some that are outside of it,” Joseph said to The Oklahoman. “So that gives us a bit more flexibility to serve those who are most in need, and help ensure that we have an equitable economic recovery coming out of the pandemic.”
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Featured Image: Joseph Laws (left) and Kindred Spirits in North OKC – Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman (right)