Northampton, Massachusetts officials have given the green light to plans to create and install four Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles– themed manhole cover to celebrate the fact that the original giant franchise was created there. And to pay for it, the town is using funds intended to help rebuild towns and businesses impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic.
The pandemic (which is still a problem, even as many are trying to pretend otherwise) has ravaged cities and businesses across the US starting in March 2020. So in 2021, Parliament passed the bill The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 aka ARPA. This is a nearly $2 trillion economic stimulus package designed to help the country recover more quickly from the various effects of the pandemic as well as try to cope with the ongoing recession. After barely passing it in congress, President Biden signed it March 11, 2021. As a result, Northampton, Massachusetts received $4 million that the town and its officials were able to spend on COVID-19 recovery efforts.
And I guess that’s why we ended up here: With a city spending $20,000 on TMNT-themed manhole cover.
According to the report of WCVB, four manhole covers will be placed along Main Street and each will represent a different turtle. This is not just a random selection, as this city was the original home of Mirage Studios, where TMNT franchise was born. Since its creation in 1984, turtles have expanded beyond comic books into movies, cartoons, games, toys, etc. So I get it. TMNT It’s a big deal for the town. But it still seems odd.
According to the incident of the city As to where all the ARPA money is going, the idea behind the custom manhole covers is to “invigorate downtown art” through a “public art tribute to mutant Ninja Turtles.” turn teenagers born in Northampton.” That’s all well and good and check out the list of other grants, it’s clear that more important projects are getting more resources from the city. But I can’t help but wonder if that $20,000 could be better spent helping more people directly. Or create a tribute to a superior program, by Disney Gargoyles.