CARES Act COVID-19 County Relief Block Grant

June 17th, 2020

The General Assembly recently passed, and Governor Wolf signed, Act 24 of 2020, which distributes $2.6 billion in federal CARES Act funding. 
Act 24 provides $625 million to 60 counties as a block grant administered by the Department of Community & Economic Development (DCED).  The amounts for each county were determined by the Pro-Rata Populations Percentage.  A list of the 60 counties and the estimated amount for each county is available here.
County block grants may be used for any of the following:

  • Offsetting the cost of direct county response, planning & outreach efforts related to COVID-19.
  • Small Business Grant Programs to support businesses with fewer than 100 employees & to support businesses and other entities that are primarily engaged in the tourism industry.
  • Grant programs to support the following entities for costs related to assisting businesses during the COVID-19 Disaster Emergency: CEDOs, LDDs, IRCs, SBDCs, EDCs.
  • Assistance to cities, boroughs, incorporated towns or townships located within eligible counties for response and planning efforts related to COVID-19.
  • Behavioral Health & Substance use disorder treatment services.
  • Nonprofit assistance programs for entities that are an exempt organizations under section 501(C)(3) OR 501(C)(19) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986.
  • Broadband internet deployment with priority given to unserved or underserved areas.
PSAB suggests borough officials contact their county commissioners, with details of direct expenses from COVID-19 response, to apply for funding.  Since the county can use these funds on a wide variety of uses, we anticipate this will be a competitive process.  For more information on the COVID-19 County Relief Block Grant Program, please visit DCED’s website.