WASHINGTON, DC – Today, U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) joined the Youngstown-Warren Regional Chamber Virtual D.C. Fly-In with elected officials and community leaders from the Mahoning Valley to discuss the work he’s doing in Washington to support the Valley during the COVID-19 pandemic. Brown is committed to addressing the Valley’s priorities in Washington as he continues his efforts to put the needs of Ohioans first.
“I’ve had countless calls with leaders across the state, from school superintendents to restaurant owners to mayors and county commissioners. I am amazed by how creative so many have been in finding new ways to fulfill their mission, but I know that more federal help is needed,” said Brown. “I’m working to get resources to Ohio quickly – and listening to what local officials and leaders need, first hand, allows me to bring that knowledge back to Washington and fight for our Ohio communities.”
Brown has long fought to include Ohio’s priorities in Senate coronavirus relief. Some of his recent actions include:
Brown recently announced that the United States Economic Development Administration (EDA) awarded a $132,500 grant to the Eastgate Regional Council of Governments in Youngstown to conduct a broadband feasibility study. This study will help attract businesses and entrepreneurs to the region and modernize existing infrastructure. This project will help implement solutions to address the lack of affordable broadband in rural areas as well as the lack of access to high-speed broadband in urban areas.
Last month, Brown announced that the Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Federal Transit Administration (FTA) awarded a $2,331,000 Accelerating Innovative Mobility (AIM) grant to the Western Reserve Transit Authority (WRTA) for a study to foster an autonomous shuttle loop in the Downtown Central Business District. This funding will aid Youngstown and WRTA’s efforts to enhance economic development and growth in the Downtown Central Business District by driving innovation and improving mobility for Ohioans.
Brown is demanding President Trump, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Senate Republicans act to help schools educate students amid the pandemic. Right now, many schools across Ohio are reopening, both in-person and virtually, and are facing the challenges of not having enough funding and support to adequately protect and support teachers, schoolchildren, and school administrators as they seek to provide a high-quality education for students.
In May, Brown announced a plan to provide local governments with direct federal relief that can be used to pay for essential services and offset lost revenues and increased costs from the COVID-19 emergency. This local assistance and flexibility would be a complement to critical relief that states also require in this crisis.
Brown has also called on President Trump to help workers and families by reinstating the full additional $600 Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefit. After Republicans let this critical assistance lapse last month, and after Trump issued an inadequate executive order, McConnell, in his latest stunt released a plan to slash the UI benefit in half, from $600 to $300 per week.