ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Albany County leaders are asking for the public’s input on how to use federal COVID relief funds. The county was given just over $59 million in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding.

Nearly $30 million has already been allocated for essential services that lost money during the pandemic. Now, county leaders are asking the public to help them decide how to spend the remaining $29 million.

“While the first tranche of federal dollars was critical to addressing sales tax revenue shortfalls to ensure county government could properly respond to the pandemic, we must now look ahead to the types of projects that will allow us to continue moving forward, stronger than before,” said County Executive Daniel P. McCoy. “Whether it’s our seniors and those with underlying health conditions, families with school-aged children, small business owners, minority communities, frontline workers or others, we know that COVID has had a disproportional impact on some compared to others. With this survey, we want to get input from our residents to help ensure that our recovery is equitable, effective, and forward-thinking.”

A range of questions will give members of the public the opportunity to voice their opinion on how the funds should be prioritized. Categories for investments include community health and wellness, economic recovery and growth, quality of life, homelessness and housing, and public safety, among others.

The survey can be completed on the county’s ARPA website, or by picking up a paper copy at the county office building. Submissions are due on November 16.