‘We need help’: Small cities face fiscal calamity from virus

ALLENTOWN, Pa. (AP) — Unfilled potholes, uncollected trash, un-mowed grass and, most significantly, fewer cops on the street are some of what the city of Allentown, Pennsylvania, says it’s facing unless Washington helps it plug a multimillion-dollar budget hole left by the pandemic. Allentown is one of thousands of smaller cities and counties across the U.S. that were cut off from direct aid in the $2 trillion coronavirus relief package. They’re now pleading for a massive cash infusion from the federal government to help stave off financial calamity. Says Allentown City Council member Ce-Ce Gerlach: “So something needs to be done. We need help.”