On Monday, Livingston County received a payment of $1,786,431 through the
Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, also called the CARES Act.
Presiding Commissioner, Ed Douglas says that the money is not meant to offset the yet undetermined loss of revenue shortfalls that cities and counties across the nation are experiencing due to the COVD-19 pandemic that lead to the shut-down of business, schools and some government offices.
“This money is to be distributed amongst the city, county and other groups and organizations within the county,” Douglas said. “We are working to determine what funds can and cannot be spent on.”
Douglas noted funds could be spent on supplies like masks and cleaning materials, testing, housing and more.
“COVID-19 has had an overwhelming impact on our economy, and many local governments, health care providers, education institutions, businesses, and other groups will rely on this funding,” Governor Mike Parson said Monday, the day funds were released to counties.
According to information sent to county officials, CARES Act funds can also be used to include:Expenses for food delivery to residents, including, senior citizens and other vulnerable populations, to enable compliance with COVID-19 public health precautions. Expenses to facilitate distance learning, including technological improvements, in connection with school closings to enable compliance with COVID-19 precautions. Expenses to improve telework capabilities for public employees to enable compliance with COVID-19 public health precautions. Expenses of providing paid sick and paid family and medical leave to public employees to enable compliance with COVID-19 public health precautions. COVID-19-related expenses of maintaining state prisons and county jails, including as relates to sanitation and improvement of social distancing measures, to enable compliance with COVID-19 public health precautions. Expenses for care for homeless populations provided to mitigate COVID-19 effects and enable compliance with COVID-19 public health precautions. Expenditures related to the provision of grants to small businesses to reimburse the costs of business interruption caused by required closures. Expenses for disinfection of public areas and other facilities, e.g., nursing homes, in response to the COVID-19 public health emergency. Expenses for technical assistance to local authorities or other entities on mitigation of COVID-19-related threats to public health and safety. Expenses for public safety measures undertaken in response to COVID-19. Expenses for quarantining individuals.
Under the CARES Act, Missouri received approximately $2.4 billion in federal funding, including nearly $173.5 million for St. Louis County and $122.7 million for Jackson County. According to a press release from the governor, 25% of the remaining state share will be distributed to Missouri counties based on population.
Livingston County received $1,786,431. Other area counties received the following amounts, based on population. Carroll County $1,018,220; Caldwell County $1,058,226; Chariton County, $871,218; Daviess County $971, 175; Grundy County $1,155,602; County $1,398,454; and Sullivan County $714,361.
Any funds that are not spent must be returned at the end of the calendar year.
Douglas noted that it is hard to estimate how much the county itself is behind on sales tax revenues, as the last reports only include the first several weeks of the shutdown, not the entire month of April. He estimates that as of the first of April the county was behind between $30,000-$40,000.