ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – When President Biden announced massive amounts of federal funding to recover from the pandemic, Albuquerque quickly got ready to put the funds to use throughout the community. Now, years later, a new report shows where Albuquerque invested the so-called Albuquerque Rescue Plan funds.

New Mexico received two installments of over $50 million from the federal government. So, where did all that money go?

The money went to so-called ‘revenue replacement,’ according to the latest report from the city. Over $66 million of rescue plan funds were used to pay salaries and benefits for first responders. Several million dollars went to pay for police vehicles, with the idea of combatting pandemic-sparked violent crime, the report says.

Addressing the negative economic impacts of the pandemic was also a key focus. The city spent more than $10 million on things like rent subsidies, cash transfers to low-to-moderate-income families, and household assistance, according to the report.

City employees also received a share of the federal funds. Albuquerque spent nearly $3 million to pay city employees who helped re-open facilities after COVID-19, according to the report. These were one-time “premium” payments.

The city also spent funds on public health and administrative costs, the report notes. What hasn’t gotten rescue plan funding is infrastructure. Originally, the plan was to pay for things like a new splash pad at Tingley Beach.

The city’s Department of Finance and Administrative Services explains that funding infrastructure projects with the rescue plan funds was scrapped because projects would have taken too much time. But, they say by shifting money around, the city as able to make other funds available for infrastructure projects. That change happened in a 2022 city council resolution.

“Federal procurement guidelines can be very lengthy and maybe not allow the City sufficient time to complete infrastructure projects,” the department says. “The city decided to use ARPA [rescue plan] funds in the category of revenue replacement instead, which made general fund available for projects that may not have been completed within the ARPA deadline.”

So far, the city has spent or has budgeted all $108 million in Albuquerque Rescue Plan funding. The finance department says the city has until December 2026 to spend all of the money.