Federal Government Threatens to Cut Arizona’s Relief Funds Following Ducey’s Support For In-Person Learning


The Biden administration on Friday threatened to cut Arizona’s coronavirus relief funding because of Governor Doug Ducey’s policies to continue in-person learning in the state.

According to the letter from the U.S. Treasury Department, Ducey’s programs, which award funds to parents who are seeking to remove their children from schools that shut down or implement a mask mandate, are not a permitted use of the money.

For example, one program, the COVID-19 Educational Recovery Benefit Program, awards funds directly to parents if their child is subjected to mask mandates or exposure-related quarantines.

“Accordingly, these school programs as currently structured are ineligible uses of (Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds),” the letter said, according to the Associated Press.

Furthermore, the agencies threatened to recover aid that has been awarded to the state and withhold future funds that are expected to be dispensed, if the state does not comply with the order within 60 days.

The Arizona governor slammed the letter handed down from the federal government, calling President Biden “out of touch with the American people.”

“First, a failed attempt to mandate vaccines. Then, a complete disregard for the public safety and humanitarian crisis at the southern border. Now, attempting to rewrite rules around public dollars that will result in LESS funding to schools and kids — particularly in low-income communities,” the Republican said in consecutive tweets.

“When it comes to education, President Biden wants to continue focusing on masks. In Arizona, we’re going to focus on math and getting kids caught up after a year of learning loss. We will respond to this letter, and we will continue to focus on things that matter to Arizonans. President Biden should do the same, and he can start by addressing the crisis at the border,” he continued.

In defiance of the order, Ducey, on the same day, launched an application portal, allowing individuals to apply for a separate program aimed at in-person learning.

The Open for Learning Recovery Benefit program will provide financial assistance to families who may face unexpected barriers due to school closures.

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Cooper Moran is a reporter for The Star News Network. Follow Cooper on Twitter. Email tips to [email protected]

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