Newly formed committee gives oversight to COVID-19 relief, recovery funds for Nashville

Newly formed committee gives oversight to COVID-19 relief, recovery funds for Nashville

NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) – Millions of relief dollars are on the line to help get Nashville back on track from COVID-19.

A newly formed financial oversight committee is making sure the money is spent properly. Mayor John Cooper appointed six people:

Ms. Sara Finley – Principal, Threshold Corporate Consulting; Former SVP & General Counsel, CVS CaremarkMr. Ed Henley – Founding Principal, Pillars Development, Inc.; Chair, Rebuilding Together NashvilleMr. Sean Henry – CEO & President, Nashville Predators & Bridgestone Arena; Chair Nashville Downtown PartnershipDr. Harold Love, Jr. – TN State Representative for District 58; Senior Pastor of Lee Chapel AMEMs. Vonda McDaniel – President, Central Labor Council of Nashville and Middle TennesseeMr. Junaid Odubeko – Partner, Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP

“The oversight committee is a vital part of our coronavirus response and Metro’s on-going commitment to good stewardship. COVID-19 has touched the lives of every Nashvillian, in one way or another. I fully support the upcoming work of this committee and look forward to working with its members to make sure our federal relief funds are spent responsibly and equitably,” Mayor Cooper said in a statement.

Vice Mayor Jim Shulman appointed three Metro Council members including Jennifer Gamble, Courtney Johnston, and Sandra Sepulveda.

News4 spoke with Sepulveda on Monday.

“My main goal is to get more money into the hands of Nashvillians and provide a little bit of relief,” Sepulveda said.

So far, Nashville has received roughly $121 million from the CARES Act. The mayor has already committed $24 million to bridging the digital divide for MNPS students and families.

“It acknowledges the fact that our schools may be in a hybrid learning environment come the fall. We know that we have a certain number of students that don’t have internet access at home. They don’t have hardware to access online resources, online content,” State Rep. Harold Love, another member of the committee said.

Love and Sepulveda are pushing for rent and mortgage relief.

“So, as we talk about not only opening businesses back up, we must consider that we have residents who need support that matter also,” Love said.

Their role on the committee will be to look at the full picture and see what people need most.

“I want to make sure that we do right by them and that we help them in the best way possible,” Sepulveda said.

Committee members will send initial recommendations to the Mayor Cooper, finance director, and Metro council by August 3rd. Final recommendations will be due by November 15.