Steve Kishel, CSSBB, Donna McKinney and Susan Watkins
FEMA will provide funding for labor, materials and equipment directly related to the COVID-19 emergency
The President issued a major disaster declaration, DR-4480, on March 20, 2020 for the COVID-19 pandemic. Due to the unprecedented nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, for the first time ever FEMA will provide Public Assistance Funding for an event that does not include a physical or natural disaster. FEMA will provide funding for labor, materials and equipment directly related to the COVID-19 emergency. Since this marks a departure from the events for which FEMA typically provides Public Assistance Grants, expectations and guidance continue to evolve.
We strongly recommend that eligible organizations create an account with the FEMA PA Grants Portal and submit FEMA form “Request for Public Assistance” (RPA) as soon as possible to confirm their eligibility. The typical window to apply for FEMA Public Assistance grants is within 30 days of the disaster declaration. However, in this case, given the nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, FEMA has established an open-ended enrollment period for DR-4480. Costs must be incurred between January 20, 2020 and September 19, 2020 in order to be eligible for funding.
Ensuring that your organization receives the maximum amount of funding to support your COVID-19 activities will require a significant amount of coordination. FEMA is the payer of last resort, and applicants that are eligible for any non-FEMA Federal and State funds for COVID-19 must use funds from those sources first. The uncertainty as to how those other sources of funding will ultimately be managed only adds to the need for organizations to have a clearinghouse to manage all financial recovery efforts.
Assistance and Guidance from Freed Maxick
The Freed Maxick Covid-19 Resource Center has a wealth of information and guidance on a wide range of topics related to tax relief and benefits, regulatory relief and benefits, and business continuity in the era of Covid-19.
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Please keep in mind that due to the quickly-changing nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, you should always discuss changes with your Freed Maxick advisor or legal counsel.