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Wednesday, March 2, 2022
Results: Honolulu survey on spending of federal recovery funds
By News Release @ 2:20 AM :: 1910 Views :: Honolulu County, COVID-19

City and County of Honolulu Fiscal Recovery Funds Community Engagement Survey

News Release from City and County of Honolulu, March 1, 2022

HONOLULU – Community engagement is critical to sound public policy and decision-making. To better understand the priorities and concerns of O‘ahu residents, the City and County of Honolulu’s Office of Economic Revitalization (OER) administered the City’s first Fiscal Recovery Fund (FRF) Community Engagement Survey from January 13, 2022 to February 14, 2022. Oʻahu residents who participated in the survey identified economic development, public health, and housing access as their top concerns.

The online survey asked community members to rank eight priorities for the use of the City’s multi-million dollar share of the Fiscal Recovery Fund as the community transitions to a post-COVID environment. The eight priorities are allowable uses of the FRF that the City identified in the 2021 initial recovery plan, which is available at oneaohu.org/frf.

Nearly 1,200 Oʻahu residents completed the survey. Key highlights include:

  • Economic & Workforce Development: The focus of respondents is strongly on rebuilding small businesses impacted by COVID-19. Workforce development and job training were also ranked highly.

  • Public Health: This remains a high priority among residents but the focus is moving toward recovery as the Omicron variant surge wanes.

  • Housing Access: Respondents viewed this subject most often as access to affordable housing or in relation to homelessness. Lack of affordable housing was called out by some as a cause of the state’s “brain drain.”

  • Public Health, Public Safety, and Vulnerable Populations: Many respondents made the connection between these priorities. Residents see the issue of homelessness as the intersection of these issues.

  • Climate Change and the Environment: More options need to be presented for residents to better understand this topic as a priority under the FRF.

  • Arts and Culture: Although this was not ranked highly as a standalone priority, many respondents expressed a desire to see cultural integration in recovery programs.

“We are grateful to everyone who invested their time and shared their ideas with us about how to best use our federal recovery funds,” said Mayor Rick Blangiardi. “Continuing the conversation is an important part of this process. These ideas will guide our Fiscal Recovery programs and planning. We look forward to engaging with our residents through more surveys and outreach.”

As an immediate next step, the Department of Community Services (DCS) is using the survey data in designing a multi-million dollar grant program to address community needs through direct and indirect investments, including investments that will build capacity in our non-profit sector. More details to come on this important initiative.      

Fiscal Recovery Funds will be allocated through 2024 and funds may be spent through 2026. The City’s multi-million dollars in FRF money is part of the nationwide $1.3 trillion American Rescue Plan Act.

The survey was promoted through social media, email campaigns, with community groups and nonprofits, and the local news media. The survey report and complete results are available at oneoahu.org/frf.

—PAU—

Community invited to help shape spending of federal recovery funds

News Release from City and County of Honolulu, January 13, 2022

HONOLULU – The City and County of Honolulu invites the community to help advice how federal recovery funds will be invested in Oʻahu’s recovery by taking a community engagement survey at https://www.oneoahu.org/frf

“We’re always listening, learning, and adapting to the community,” said Mayor Rick Blangiardi. “The insights from this survey along with feedback from the Honolulu City Council and other stakeholders will inform our priorities and decision-making for federal recovery funds. I encourage every resident on Oʻahu to share their ideas with us through the survey.”

The input received from the public, along with feedback from the Honolulu City Council and other stakeholders, will help inform decision-making for federal recovery funds. The City has already received $193 million and anticipates receiving an additional $193 million this year. Survey participants will be able to rank funding priorities in the survey and provide comments as to where money could be used.

The survey will be open to the public through February 14, 2022. While the City will share the overall results of the survey, the City values people’s privacy and all individual responses will be kept confidential.

—PAU— 

KITV: Honolulu community invited to share opinion on how city should spend $386M

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