Congressman Pence seeks to free CARES act funds for states

Congressman Greg Pence, a Columbus Republican, is cosponsoring a bill to allow states to determine how to spend remaining money from the CARES Act.

The Coronavirus Relief Fund Flexibility Act would prohibit funds from being spent on government employee bonuses, lobbying expenses, or budget shortfalls predating the pandemic, while also providing a 50 percent match for funds spent on infrastructure projects begun in the next year. States would be required to hold a quarter of their remaining relief funds in trust for future COVID-19 expenses.

Pence said that if passed, the bill will give states more power to make their own decisions, so taxpayer money is not spent in inefficient or ineffective ways. Pence said that about $80 billion dollars remains unspent of the $150 billion the states received for their response to COVID-19.