Erie County will receive more than $24.3 million from the state for its COVID-19 relief efforts, according to Senator Dan Laughlin, who supported passage of the bill providing that money.
Senate Bill 1108 directs $2.6 billion in federal CARES (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security) funding for critical needs created by the COVID-19 pandemic, including $625 million for counties that did not receive a direct subsidy from the federal government. The bill was sent to the Governor for enactment into law.
Senator Laughlin said he strongly supported the measure, which will provide a block grant of $24,358,827 to Erie County.
“We have certainly endured a rough Spring and this money will help the county invest in efforts to restore our economy and assist community organizations and small businesses in recovering from the impact of the pandemic,” Senator Laughlin said. “Senate Bill 1108 also gives Erie County a great deal of flexibility in determining the best uses of that money.
Under the bill, counties can use the funding to: cover increased costs due to COVID-19; provide small business assistance; provide tourism industry assistance; aid municipalities; expand broadband access; and support behavioral health/substance abuse programs and non-profit organizations
“We recognize that COVID-19 had an unprecedented and varying impact on counties and municipalities across the Commonwealth, straining services and draining vital resources. That’s why we built in a wide-ranging menu of eligible uses for these funds,” Senator Laughlin said. “I know one thing for sure, the Erie County Council knows our local community much better than the vast majority of officials in Harrisburg or Washington D.C. That’s why provided this federal money in a way that I believe will ensure the best results for everyone in Erie County.”
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