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West Linn rep plans to spend ARPA allocation on local business groups, food security, mental health.

FILE - Rep. Rachel Prusak, D- West Linn and Tualatin, proposes spending $2 million on ARPA funds  on local business groups, food security, mental health support. Oregon legislators representing West Linn will allocate funds from a pot of nearly $2 trillion in the American Rescue Plan Act to help local businesses with economic recovery, fund food security and mental health support, finance affordable housing, build regional trails and combat domestic abuse and sexual assault.

Each representative in Oregon's House of Representatives will receive $2 million in ARPA funding for their district, while each state senator will receive $4 million.

"As a nurse practitioner and as a representative, I witnessed how COVID and the economic recession devastated our communities," Rachel Prusak, the representative for West Linn, Tualatin, Stafford, Durham and King City, said in a June 3 press release. "ARPA funding is an opportunity to give our local businesses the foundation they need to recover and grow. But economic recovery is not enough to combat the damage caused by these crises."

Prusak plans to send funds to the West Linn and Lake Oswego business recovery centers and the Tualatin/Durham/River Grove/Stafford Business Resiliency Center, which each provide business grants, employee support and training, legal aid and other assistance to local businesses.

Her funding will also go toward a pilot transit program between Bridgeport Village and Clackamas Town Center.

"Funding for mental health support and food security efforts will be channeled through three community nonprofit organizations: Tualatin Together and the Borland Clinic, which will work in coordination to provide mental health and addiction prevention resources for families; and Packed with Pride, part of the Foundation for Tigard Tualatin Schools, which delivers food boxes to thousands of students and families each week," Prusak's press release stated.

Sen. Rob Wagner, who serves District 19 covering Lake Oswego, West Linn, Tualatin, Southwest Portland, Durham and Rivergrove, will use his allocated $4 million on several projects in Lake Oswego and Southwest Portland.

According to Gordon Levitt, Wagner's district director, the senator will give $2 million to Habitat for Humanity for affordable housing projects in Lake Oswego and Hillsdale. Rep. Andrea Salinas, D-Lake Oswego, will contribute another $1 million for the projects.

Between the two projects, one at the intersection of Boones Ferry Road and Upper Drive and the other on the campus of Greater Portland Bible Church, Habitat for Humanity will build 70 new housing units.

Wagner and Salinas also teamed up to give funds to the Lake Oswego Pedestrian Trail and a racial justice grant program.

Together they plan on giving $900,000 for completion of the trail.

Seeding Justice, a nonprofit organization offering grants for social and environmental justice work, will receive a total $1 million from Salinas and Wagner.

Wagner will also give $800,000 to the Oregon Sexual Assault Task Force and the Oregon Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence.

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