PITTSBURGH, PA (December 21, 2020) Mayor William Peduto released the following statement regarding the latest federal COVID-19 relief package:
"The COVID-19 pandemic has affected us all on every level – as individuals, as communities, as cities, as states and as a country. All of us are looking to Congress for relief and assistance. I, and mayors around the country, am profoundly disappointed that direct financial assistance for cities was removed from the latest COVID relief package. With the exclusion of cities from this stimulus package, our first responders and frontline essential workers who have worked tirelessly during this pandemic to protect our communities will be hurt the most. What this country needs is a comprehensive recovery bill like the Heroes Act that the House Democrats passed six months ago.
With expirations on direct protections for Americans looming, I am grateful for the relief that the package does deliver, including unemployment compensation protections, rental assistance programs, critical support for restaurants and small businesses and relief for music and entertainment venues. I am grateful that there is some relief for families, but those of us working directly with these families know that $600 is not enough to relieve struggling families of the devastating effects the pandemic has had on their livelihood.
Our local and national economies cannot recover or survive without real relief. Our communities cannot flourish with businesses shuttering. Economists have made it clear that a comprehensive stimulus will poise our economy for recovery, and it will save lives and our communities. I am confident that the new Congress and administration will revisit the commitment to direct relief for cities and pass an additional stimulus package that fully meets the needs of our country."