Senate Passes Bills to Disperse Federal CARES Funding

The Senate has passed two bills to direct $2.6 billion in federal CARES funding to support individuals, families, small businesses, organizations and county governments that were most heavily impacted by the COVID-19 virus, according to Senator John R. Gordner (R-27). 

“I was pleased to support this important legislation to drive out critical federal dollars to the people and organizations that were affected the most by COVID-19,” said Senator Gordner.  “We have seen the devastating impact of this pandemic and these dollars will help to assist the recovery process.”

Under Senate Bill 1108, all five counties in the 27th Senatorial District will receive county block grant funding.  The total amount allocated for the entire state is $625 million and funding levels for each county were determined by the Pro-Rata Populations Percentage.  Specifically, each county will receive:

  • Luzerne – $28,665,566
  • Northumberland – $8,203,927
  • Columbia – $5,866,824
  • Snyder – $3,645,949
  • Montour – $1,646,330

The Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) will provide $625 million in block grants to counties.  These grants can be used for: increase costs due to COVID-19; Small Business Assistance; Tourism Industry Assistance; Municipal and Community Assistance; Behavioral Health and Substance Use Disorder; Nonprofit Organizations; and Broadband Deployment.  DCED will also provide $50 million in hazard pay grants to front line workers who are in direct contact with COVID-19 patients.

The Housing Finance Agency will offer $175 million in Mortgage and Rental Assistance with $25 million of that amount going towards mortgages and the other $150 million would be applied to rent.

The Department of Human Services will be able to offer $692 million in funding for Long-Term Living Programs, including a significant $632 million for long-term care facilities, such as nursing homes and personal care facilities.

Finally, Senate Bill 1122 provides the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency with $50 million in grants available to help support Fire and EMS Companies that have seen excess costs as a result of the COVID-19 crisis.

Contact:               Mike Stephens  mstephens@pasen.gov