American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA)

In March of 2021, the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) was passed by the United States Congress and signed into the law. ARPA provided $1.9 trillion dollars to address the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic across the country. This included providing funding directly to state, local, territorial, and tribal governments to address the impact of the pandemic in their communities. The City of Chelsea
received approximately $40 million in ARPA from the state and federal governments.

Community Fund Allocation Process

Chelsea received $40 million dollars in ARPA funds in 2021. Of that, $25 million was used to offset City revenue lost due to the pandemic. The City elected to use the remaining $15 million to create a
Community Fund to support initiatives and priorities developed by the community to address priority needs in Chelsea. To frame the process, six priority areas were identified for further exploration and understanding through data collection efforts.

A participatory community process, led by a Community Advisory Committee, was implemented to inform the allocation strategies. To inform the allocation process and Advisory Committee decision
making and to further understanding of the six priority areas and their impact on Chelsea residents, data were collected through key informant interviews and focus groups, a review of secondary data, and a resident survey.

ARPA Committee members

  • Roy Avellaneda - Councilor At-Large, President
  • Roseann Bongiovanni - GreenRoots
  • Jenny Camacho - Small Business Owner
  • Susana Carella - Resident
  • Joan Cromwell - Chelsea Black Community
  • Richelle Cromwell - Community Action Program Inter-City
  • Cara Cogliano - Chelsea Community Connections Coalition
  • Richard Gordon - Small Business Owner
  • Rosa Lopez - Resident
  • Rafael Mares - TND
  • Alice Murillo - Bunker Hill Community College
  • Paul Nowicki, Chelsea Chamber of Commerce
  • Mohamud Qasim - Resident
  • Edgard Romero - Resident and Small Business Owner
  • Mayra Romero - Resident and Small Business Owner
  • Amanda Rosario - Resident
  • Scott Scherffenberg, ROCA
  • Todd Taylor - District 1 Councilor
  • Gladys Vega - La Colaborativa
  • Wendy Velazquez - Resident

ARPA Community Engagement Schedule

ARPA Community Engagement Schedule - Updated on 6/21/2022
Action Item 


Documents & Video 

Chelsea Cable Show

Sept. 28, 2021 City Manager Update Recording

Community Advisory Committee #1 

Sept. 29, 2021 

Chelsea City Council Meeting 

Oct. 28

City Council Sub-Committee Recording

Focus Group A -  Housing 

by November 


Focus Group B - Food Security 

by November 


Focus Group C - Small Business 

by November 


Focus Group D - Workforce Development

by November


Community Advisory Committee #2 

November 3rd, 2021

Community Leader Interviews 

Prior to each topic date

Key Informant Interview Notes

Focus Group E - Environment & Open Space

by November


Focus Group F - Mental & Behavioral Health 

by November

Combined Focus Group Notes

Community Advisory Committee Meeting #3 

November 17th, 2021

Community Advisory Committee Meeting #4

Dec. 1st , 2021

Resident Survey 


Community Advisory Committee Meeting #5

Jan 19, 2022

Community Advisory Committee Meeting #6

Feb 2, 2022

Chelsea Community Meeting #6 (Presentation)

Community Advisory Committee Meeting #7

Feb 16, 2022

City Council Sub - Committee on Conference Meeting

March 15, 2022

Public Meeting

March 2, 2022

Public meeting (Recording)

Community Advisory Committee Meeting #8 March 16, 2022 Chelsea Community Meeting #8 (Recording)
Community Advisory Committee Meeting #9 March 30, 2022 Chelsea Community Meeting #9 (Recording)

Final Allocation Plan 

Eligible Uses of Funding

ARPA funds provide a substantial infusion of resources to help turn the tide on the pandemic, address its economic fallout and lay the foundation for a strong and equitable recovery. Eligible uses of ARPA funding include:

  • Supporting urgent COVID-19 response efforts to continue to decrease the spread of the virus and bring the pandemic under control
  • Replacing lost revenue to strengthen support for vital public services and help retain jobs
  • Providing assistance to small businesses, households, and hard-hit industries and communities hardest hit by COVID-19
  • Investing in water, sewer, and broadband infrastructure.

For more information about how funds can be used, go to the US Department of the Treasury Quick Reference Guide.

City of Chelsea Expected Funding

The City of Chelsea expects to receive a total of $40,323,106 from the American Rescue Plan Act over the course of the next year.

  • $28,459,494 – provided directly by Governor Baker from the State ARPA allocation based upon the disproportionate impact of COVID in Chelsea.
  • $4,154,295 – direct payment to the City from ARPA.
  • $7,709,317– the City of Chelsea’s per capita share of funds distributed by ARPA to Suffolk County, which no longer functions as a county government. 

If you have questions, please email or call 617-466-4209.