LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Louisville leaders presented their plan for spending more than $262 million of federal funding Tuesday. Mayor Greg Fischer submitted an ordinance that will use the funding for public safety, combating homelessness and recognizing the efforts of city employees.
The funds are part of the $388 million given to Louisville through the approval of the American Rescue Plan (ARP) earlier this year.
Here's how the funds are broken down:
Public Safety - $78 million
Nearly half of the funding will be used for implementing the public safety reforms recommended by Hillard Heintze and the Department of Justice. The main areas of focus will be accountability and community engagement, with the goal of "constitutional and effective policing."
The rest of the funding will be used to:
- Expand violence deterrence and prevention programs,
- Address youth violence through targeted programming,
- Create a Youth Transfer Processing Center for youth detainees,
- Extend the pilot police deflection program to another district,
- Fund the Family Recovery Court, which helps parents who are involved with the child support system and have a history of substance use, for another year, and
- Provide new equipment and additional storage for the Louisville Metro Police Department.
"This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to have federal dollars to invest in our community for the safety of our citizens, which is the number one responsibility of government," said Metro Council President David James.
Homelessness and Affordable Housing - $100 million
Mayor Fischer said the city wants to use a "good amount" of the funding to reduce the number of people experiencing homelessness in the city. Nearly $80 million would be used to create and support affordable and client-centered housing.
Other initiatives include:
- Providing necessary items and services for the Safe Outdoor Space,
- Increasing the Down Payment Assistance program to help another 150 homeowners, and
- Increasing funding to a program that helps people pay for their home repairs so they can stay in their homes.
An additional $11 million in HOME ARP funds will be available after a federally required community engagement process and approval from HUD.
Mayor Fischer said he hopes this funding will make a "significant dent" in the number of people experiencing homelessness in Louisville. However, he admitted that this funding will not completely solve the issue.
Through the proposal, certain public safety and essential employees will be eligible for increased pay and bonuses. Fischer said these employees are ones that met critical needs during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The highest payments will go to people working in Metro Corrections, fire, LMPD, EMS and sanitization - those Fischer said were "face-to-face on the front line."
Fischer also said these payments will only go to employees who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
The proposed ordinance will go before Louisville Metro Council for discussion, modifications and approval. It will be considered by the Budget Committee at a meeting on Nov. 4 and, if approved, could be voted on by the full council on Nov. 11.
The next ordinance, focused on addressing workforce development and healthy neighborhoods, will likely be proposed in January or February.
The first round of ARP funding was used in June to meet COVID-related emergency needs like public health and eviction prevention.
All ARP funding must be spent by Dec. 31, 2026.