Reporting on ARPA: Tips for journalists on digging deep & informing readers

Free virtual event with reporter Shelby Harris about how to learn about and report on ARPA spending locally and statewide.


Over the past year, Carolina Public Press has reported about how local governments are spending American Rescue Plan Act funds.

ARPA funds, which the federal government designed to recover the nation from the COVID-19 pandemic, can be used in many ways, which can make it difficult for journalists following the nearly $2 trillion funding stream.

Throughout the project, we discovered that elected officials are using ARPA funding in many ways, such as supplementing a local farmers market, repairing outdated sewer systems or providing employee pay. Shelby has tracked and reported on the amount local communities are receiving, how elected officials are and aren't involving the community in deciding where the money should be invested, and whether it's making a difference at the local and statewide level.

If you're a journalist interested in government accountability, community investment, actions of local and statewide government, pandemic relief and more, Shelby can share what she's learned about ARPA, how and where to ask questions and gather data, and tell the stories that engage audiences to understand, follow and act on ARPA funding in their communities.