Snohomish County Councilmember: Priority for recovery funds is to support our businesses

Jun 10, 2021, 8:54 AM | Updated: 9:03 am
Edmonds, Snohomish recovery...
Tents set up in downtown Edmonds. (MyNorthwest photo)
(MyNorthwest photo)

Things are looking good in Snohomish County as it relates to COVID-19 numbers, but with the state set to reopen soon, how does the recovery look economically?

Gov. Inslee: Washington ‘close’ to being able to reopen ahead of schedule

“COVID has had a devastating impact, not just the virus, but obviously the state restrictions that have been put down on several of our businesses and others have had a really devastating impact on our economy here in Snohomish County,” Snohomish County Councilmember Nate Nehring told KTTH’s Jason Rantz Show.

“What we’re working on internally at the local level is putting together a plan, both in the near term and the long term, to try to work toward an economic recovery,” he continued. “And one of the things that’s going to be really key to that plan is the federal money, which was appropriated, which I’m sure you know about. As somebody who’s very fiscally conservative, I’m not a fan of the way that the federal money was appropriated. I think it’s way too much and it ran out the federal deficit. But that was a decision that was made by Congress. They sent about $162 million to Snohomish County to be spent on COVID recovery related items.”

So now, the county council is starting discussions on how best to spend those funds in order to advance the recovery from COVID-19.

If it were up to Nehring, the top priority for the recovery funds should be supporting local businesses.

“The reason for that is I think government did so much harm to businesses in the last year, year and a half, and I think that needs to be the focus,” he said. “We’re seeing a lot of businesses struggling. Some of them have gone out of business, and won’t be coming back. But a lot of the ones that are still around are struggling.”

“There are new challenges coming up, like now, for example, where it’s very difficult to hire folks,” he added. “And so I think anything we can do with these ARPA funds — the American Rescue Plan Act funds — in order to support our businesses and help them to recover. And then I think, in turn, that’s going to help support our local economies and get everyone back on track.”

Other examples for spending may include improving broadband access in rural areas, and helping both landlords and tenants who really are struggling to pay rent due to COVID-19 impacts with issues created by the eviction moratorium.

“This has really hurt landlords and tenants, but there’s a lot of situations I’ve heard of personally in north Snohomish County, in the area I represent, where landlords have tenants who are working, they are making money, but they’re refusing to pay rent as a result of this eviction moratorium,” Nehring said. “And so I think prioritizing these funds in ways that can get those landlords assistance, in addition to renters who are in legitimate situations where they’re not able to pay as a result of COVID.”

“I think all those are ideas for priorities, but the number one should be supporting our businesses,” he said.

WA Rep: State of emergency will remain with no way to ‘corral’ Gov. Inslee

The plan is now at the county executive’s office in Snohomish County and he’s working on developing a spending proposal, Nehring says. He hopes that the money is prioritized first for those businesses that have been most damaged by the COVID-19 restrictions.

Listen to the Jason Rantz Show weekday afternoons from 3 – 6 p.m. on KTTH 770 AM (or HD Radio 97.3 FM HD-Channel 3). Subscribe to the podcast here.

Jason Rantz on AM 770 KTTH
  • listen to jason rantzTune in to AM 770 KTTH weekdays at 3-6pm toThe Jason Rantz Show.

Jason Rantz Show

Jason Rantz

Everett homeless camping, no sit no lie, Snohomish County...
KTTH staff

Councilmember: Snohomish County sales tax increase getting ‘rushed with minimal transparency’

Snohomish County Council could soon pass a 0.1% sales tax increase, as part of a process Councilmember Nate Nehring says is littered with issues.
2 days ago
Jason Rantz

Rantz: WSU amplifies claim that farmers markets, food charity are ‘white supremacy’ in action

Washington State University is amplifying claims that farmers markets and food charities are examples of "white supremacy" and "white dominant culture."
3 days ago
Kshama Sawant recall debate...
Jason Rantz

Rantz: There’s only one Kshama Sawant recall result that truly matters

Socialist Seattle City Council firebrand Kshama Sawant faces voters on Dec. 7 for her recall election. There's only one result that tells us something.
4 days ago
Jason Rantz

Rantz: Seattle-area teacher recorded during vulgar, anti-police Kyle Rittenhouse rant

A teacher in the Northshore School District was recorded during a vulgar and one-sided rant about the Kyle Rittenhouse trial.
5 days ago
Kent Mayor...
KTTH staff

Kent mayor connects string of recent shootings to King County’s ‘lax prosecution of drug crimes’

Kent Mayor Dana Ralph discusses how a recent state supreme court ruling has impeded King County's ability to prosecute drug crimes.
5 days ago
Jason Rantz

Rantz: Seattle School Board hides findings that its members harassed Black staff

Two Seattle Public School board directors who claim to be anti-racist progressives were found guilty of harassing, intimidating, and bullying Black staff.
6 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Experience Anacortes

Coastal Christmas Celebration Week in Anacortes

With minimal travel time required and every activity under the sun, Anacortes is the perfect vacation spot for all ages.

Delayed-Onset PTSD: Signs and Symptoms

Lakeside-Milam Recovery Centers SPONSORED — You’re probably familiar with post-traumatic stress disorder. Often abbreviated as PTSD, this condition is diagnosed when a person experiences a set of symptoms for at least a month after a traumatic event. However, for some people, these issues take longer to develop. This results in a diagnosis of delayed-onset PTSD […]

Medicare open enrollment ends Dec. 7. Free unbiased help is here!

Washington State Office of the Insurance Commissioner SPONSORED — Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period, also called the Annual Election Period, is Oct. 15 to Dec. 7. During this time, people enrolled in Medicare can: Switch from Original Medicare to a Medicare Advantage plan and vice versa. Join, drop or switch a Part D prescription drug plan, […]

How to Have a Stress-Free Real Estate Experience

The real estate industry has adapted and sellers are taking full advantage of new real estate models. One of which is Every Door Real Estate.
IQ Air

How Poor Air Quality Is Affecting Our Future Athletes

You cannot control your child’s breathing environment 100% of the time, but you can make a huge impact.
Swedish Health Services

Special Coverage: National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month

There are a wide variety of treatment options available for men with prostate cancer. The most technologically advanced treatment option in the Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform.
Snohomish County Councilmember: Priority for recovery funds is to support our businesses