Special to SW Rankin News
Governor Tate Reeves and the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency are launching the MEMA COVID-19 Emergency Relief Program. Through Mississippi Legislature’s House Bill 1799 and Senate Bill 3047, MEMA was allocated $70,000,000 of CARES Act money to assist counties and municipalities with their COVID-19 expenses.
Through FEMA’s COVID-19 Economic Disaster Declaration, counties and municipalities and specific nonprofits are eligible for public assistance. While FEMA reimburses seventy-five percent of those approved expenses, some entities struggle to meet the twenty-five percent match. Through the MEMA COVID-19 Emergency Relief Program, the burden is now lifted from the counties and municipalities to provide that match.
Not all COVID-19 expenses are eligible for federal reimbursement through FEMA; therefore SB 3047 details what other expenses can be covered by the CARES Act funds. The allocation of funds from the Relief Program is based on the county or municipality’s population as listed in the 2010 U.S. Census. If a government entity’s costs are not entirely covered by FEMA’s reimbursement, MEMA will work with remaining CARES Act funds to help ensure a one-hundred percent reimbursement.
The CARES Act funding application process will be open from August 3 through October 15. Information on how to apply for CARES Act funding will be available by July 31 on MEMA’s website: www.msema.org. According to SB 3047, reimbursements must begin August 15. Monies must be obligated by November 30 or will be returned to the governor.
Counties and municipalities can apply for public assistance through FEMA’s Grants Portal now by visiting https://grantee.fema.gov.