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Redding Unveils Local $37.5 Million Stimulus Plan

City of Redding
Redding City Hall

The City of Redding this week approved a local stimulus package to try to reduce the financial burden on residents and start encouraging economic growth while social distancing measures remain in place.

Redding’s economic response plan totals $37.5 million. The money comes from a variety of local funding sources including deferred taxes and fees. $200 will go to every household from cap and trade auction proceeds and deposits on utility accounts will be returned to residents.

“One of the ways that we felt we could ease the burden quickly is to figure out a way to make it so that if people can’t pay for all of their expenses for a month, maybe we can ease the ways that they, or ease the fact that they could pay for utilities,” says Janelle Galbraith, the assistant to the city manager.

Redding owns its own electric utility, so many of the refunds on things like deposits and suspended late fees came from reorganizing that part of the city’s budget.

They also plan to allocate $20 million for construction projects on city infrastructure.

“Our hope is to be able to package those in small enough pieces that our local contractors can bid and be awarded those. So that $20 million worth of projects stays. That money stays local,” Galbraith says. “It goes to our local contractors and our local workers.”

The construction is expected to include energy efficiency projects and deferred maintenance on city infrastructure like fire stations, lighting upgrades, and possible work on the Civic Auditorium.

Galbraith says some of the funding – including about $425,000 from utility late fees – usually goes to the city’s general fund, but officials believe they can absorb the loss.

Erik Neumann is JPR's news director. He earned a master's degree from the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism and joined JPR as a reporter in 2019 after working at NPR member station KUER in Salt Lake City.