Biden administration threatens to withdraw Kovid aid from Arizona over anti-mask policies Arizona

The Biden administration Covid-19 from Arizona is threatening to return millions of dollars to the relief fund because the state is discouraging families from following the federal guidelines recommending wearing masks in schools.

Arizona Republican Gov. Doug Ducey has been at loggerheads with the Biden administration for months over the use of aid funds. Other Republican governors across the country are also trying to use the funds for tax cuts. Not related to the epidemic And are not authorized under the terms of the grant.

Two Arizona State programs to help schools and students are directing funds away from the jurisdiction with mask needs. The state’s education plus-up grant program provides कोष 163m in funding to schools, but districts that need to cover their faces are ineligible. And its Covid-19 Educational Recovery Benefit program provides parents with up to $ 7,000 to leave school districts where children need to cover their faces.

Although Dusi’s office claimed it was a response to the parents’ shouts, the show had a small audience. As of last week, only 85 students were receiving vouchers and less than $ 600,000 of the m 10m was allocated.

Also last week, the governor created a third program that is likely to run on Treasury Department spending rules. This is another $ 10 million school voucher program for parents whose schools have been closed for one day since January 2 because of Kovid.

The Treasury Department said in a letter on Friday that the federal government had 60 days to remove anti-masking provisions before collecting the relief money and threatened to cut off another installment.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends wearing a global mask on school settings to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

“By discouraging families and school districts from following this directive, the above conditions undermine the efforts to prevent the spread of COVID-19,” the Treasury Department wrote. “Accordingly, under the current structure these are improper use of school programs (coronavirus state and local financial recovery funds).”

The fund could also withhold a second installment from the state of Arizona (US rescue plan) until the Treasury is informed that the issues outlined above have been adequately addressed, “reads a letter from Deputy Chief Compliance Officer Kathleen Victorino.

Arizona has received nearly half of the $ 4.2 billion provided to the state under the 2021 Coronavirus Relief Bill. The next installment is left in the spring.

Accordingly Local media reportsDaniel Ruiz, Duchess’s chief of staff, said the governor’s office would “ensure we can support (programs) at the economic level, and we will challenge any attempt by them to change policies at every level in terms of litigation or regulations.”

Ruiz added that the governor’s office first heard about the letter through media reports and accused the Biden administration of poor communication.

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