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US Rep. Val Demings Announces New Orlando Funding

Washington, D.C.: Today Rep. Val Demings (FL-10) announced two new sets of federal funding for Central Florida from the American Rescue Plan, which was passed by Democrats in Congress earlier this year. No Republican Members of Congress supported the American Rescue Plan.

Specifically:

  1. Orlando International Airport will receive over $171 million as part of a nationwide $8 billion in grants to keep U.S. airport workers employed, construction projects going and help U.S. airports recover from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  2. Head Start (early childhood education) grantees serving Florida’s 10th District will receive $5,113,842 to improve programming serving young children in Central Florida.
    1. The funding for Head Start comes in addition to $2.5 billion that Rep. Demings secured to help Florida reopen childcare providers safely, keep workers on payroll, and lower costs for hardworking families.

Said Rep. Demings, “Investments in our children and our economy are critical as we work to move out of this pandemic and rebuild American prosperity. We passed the American Rescue Plan to put checks into pockets, vaccines into arms, and provide a surge of targeted resources into our economy. I am proud to announce today’s new funding, which will help our airport recover, welcome visitors and residents back to Orlando, prepare Florida’s children for success, and help parents get back to work and grow our economy knowing that their children are safe and cared for.”

Said U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, “The Airport Rescue Grants keep workers employed and help the aviation sector recover as more Americans get vaccinated and begin traveling again. These grants are part of the Administration’s commitment to build back a better and safer transportation system throughout our country.”

Background

Airport Funding

The Airport Rescue Grants Program provides economic relief to eligible commercial service, reliever, and general aviation airports. The money will help keep people safe and employed by reimbursing operational expenses, debt service payments, and costs related to combating the spread of pathogens at the airport. Airports can also use the money to provide rent relief to in-terminal retail and concession companies. The funding requires that airports continue to employ at least 90 percent of their pre-pandemic employees for those airports that cover a majority of the traveling public.

  • Orlando International Airport will receive over $150 million for general airport relief and an additional $21 million for relief for concessionaires at the airport for a total of over $171 million from the American Rescue Plan.

Head Start

The American Rescue Plan also included $1 billion in grants for local Head Start programs around the country. Grantees announced today which serve FL-10 are:

  • Children’s Home Society ($279,981)
  • Community Coordinated Care for Children, Inc. ($1,252,736)
  • Orange County ($1,837,824)
  • Redlands Christian Migrant Association ($1,743,301)

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