Editor’ note: On September 1, 2020, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced new eligibility requirements for emergency funding under the Public Assistance Program, including new requirements for funding of PPE and other supplies. Read more about the new policy here.
Governments and public entities are on the front lines of the coronavirus crisis, delivering essential services to families and businesses. While state and local government employers are not eligible for CARES Act provisions like the Paycheck Protection Program and Employee Retention Tax Credit or the refundable tax credits to offset the emergency paid leave mandated under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, they are entitled to federal reimbursement for certain emergency protective measures. RKL’s public sector team offers an overview of available grant funding and how governments can apply for assistance as the battle against coronavirus continues.
FEMA Public Assistance Grant Program
As governments take the appropriate actions to protect public health and safety in accordance with the national emergency declaration enacted on March 13, 2020, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) reminds public officials that costs for certain emergency protective measures may be eligible for nearly full reimbursement under FEMA’s Public Assistance Program.
How much is reimbursed?
State, territorial, tribal and local government entities and certain private nonprofit organizations are eligible to apply for FEMA’s public assistance grants to cover no less than 75 percent of eligible costs for emergency measures and restoration projects. Final reimbursement determinations will be coordinated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and FEMA.
What projects/measures are reimbursable?
Examples of reimbursable protective measures during the coronavirus emergency include, but are not limited to:
- Management, control and reduction of immediate threats to public health and safety
- Emergency medical care
- Medical sheltering (e.g. when existing facilities are reasonably forecasted to become overloaded in the near future and cannot accommodate needs)
Read the FEMA Public Assistance fact sheet for more details on eligibility.
How do public entities apply?
Local governments and other eligible applicants must apply through their respective state, tribal or territorial jurisdictions. For PA-based applicants, the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency (PEMA) is the liaison to FEMA and federal disaster assistance. Learn more about the application process and access request forms on PEMA’s website.
RKL’s team of public sector advisors are available to support local governments and public entities through the grant application process, as well as address any challenges related to business continuity, financial stability or workforce management. Contact your engagement partner to start the conversation.