ARPA Grants

Overview

The Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (MBLC) is in the process of evaluating how to best use the funds made available to the agency through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). Libraries will have access to funds through several different avenues created by the ARPA legislation. The MBLC will attempt to alert libraries to funding opportunities, but will be directly responsible for only some of the ARPA funds.

Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS)

IMLS has awarded the MBLC $3.5 million in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds. The Chief Officers of State Library Agencies (COSLA) hosted a call with IMLS Director Crosby Kemper and IMLS staff on March 18, at which they shared initial guidance on spending priorities. All project activities will have to be completed and all funds obligated by September 30, 2022. In addition, there is no match requirement for these funds.

Projects:

Emergency Connectivity Fund

The Emergency Connectivity Fund (ECF) provides $7.17 billion to libraries and schools to help bridge the "Homework Gap" for schools, and the "Connectivity Gap" for libraries.  The FCC promulgated rules for the program on May 11. Like E-Rate, ECF will be administered by USAC, the Universal Service Administrative Co. under the aegis of the FCC.

Last Updated 05/20/2021

Other Sources

National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) both also received funds through ARPA and will likely offer library eligible grant programs either directly or through other organizations. At the local level, states and municipalities will receive general aid, for which libraries can advocate receiving a share.

For More Information

Robert Favini, Head of Library Advisory and Development
617-725-1860 x237
(in Massachusetts) 800-952-7403, x237
robert.favini@mass.gov

Amy Clayton, Administrative Coordinator
617-725-1860 x228
(in Massachusetts) 800-952-7403, x228
amy.clayton@mass.gov