The American Rescue Plan for Digital Transformation & IT Modernization
In an era characterized by rapid modernization, increased constituent expectations, shrinking budgets, and unpredictable outside disruptions, local governments’ reliance on arcane paper-based processes drains its scarce resources, and limits its ability to effectively serve constituents and enable civic engagement.
COVID-19 and the required response, had a significant impact on the budgets of local governments which has put a strain on services and staff. However, the $1.9 Trillion American Rescue Plan - passed by Congress in March 2021, and includes $350 billion in direct relief funds for state and local governments, represents a rare opportunity for local governments to invest in the modernization of IT systems, government software, and digital services.
Unlike the CARES Act, which only sent funds to governments with populations of 500,000 or more, the 2021 ARP provides governments of all sizes with direct Federal funding.
Technology investments can solve short term needs such as increasing efficiency, improving constituent services, and enabling remote work, while simultaneously transforming local governments so that they can thrive in the digital age for decades to come.