Attorney General Ford Supports Equal Coronavirus Relief Funding for the District of Columbia

March 26, 2020

Carson City, NV - Nevada Attorney General Aaron D. Ford joined 36 attorneys general in sending a letter to President Trump and House and Senate leaders expressing concern over the proposed allocation of funding for the District of Columbia in the Coronavirus Relief Fund passed by the Senate on March 26.

The current relief package allocates at least $1.25 billion in direct payments to every state but allocates only $500 million to the District by grouping it with territories. In their letter, the attorneys general urge the federal government to ensure that the District government, along with all 50 states, receives the minimum allocation of $1.25 billion.

The District has nearly 200 confirmed coronavirus cases, which outpaces nearly two dozen states and territories. Moreover, two states with smaller populations than the District will receive more than twice as much funding as the District in the current relief package. The attorneys general insist that the District must be treated like the other states and that shortchanging D.C. by at least $750 million is likely to exacerbate the COVID-19 crisis and will harm the D.C. Attorney General's ability to enforce critical emergency response measures, such as limitations on business operations, price gouging prohibitions, and other protections for District residents. 

"The District of Columbia is the seat of the federal government and is obligated to protect the health and safety of hundreds of thousands of federal workers," said AG Ford. "It's critical that they receive the funding it needs to adequately serve its residents and businesses."

The letter reads, in part, "The District's contributions to the federal government are unique and substantial. Moreover, District residents pay the full panoply of federal taxes. Indeed, District residents contribute more to the federal government on a per capita basis than residents of any other state or territory. At bottom, the need in the District and the contribution of its residents to the federal fisc are significant."

In addition to Nevada and the District of Columbia, the letter was signed by Alaska, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Northern Mariana Islands, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin.

The issued letter is attached.