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The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act of 2020 provides $150 billion in assistance to U.S. state, local, territorial, and tribal governments to address the direct impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Virginia received approximately $3.1 billion—distributed through the Coronavirus Relief Fund— and the state, in turn, allocated portions to cities and counties based on population. The City of Waynesboro has received two allocations of CARES Act funding for a total of $3,948,760.
CARES Act money comes with strict preconditions, and the City would have to return any funds spent for purposes that do not meet those conditions.
Funds may only cover direct costs associated with the response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and those costs must be:
The City cannot spend the funds to make up for the FY 2021 budget shortfall of $4.2 million due to the pandemic. State and local government officials have requested that Congress lift this restriction, but Congress has not taken action to allow that flexibility or to provide funding for that purpose.
Congress provided coronavirus relief funds to bolster the continuous delivery of government services during the pandemic, specifically, public health, public safety and human services. A description of how the City is helping to alleviate economic hardship facing Waynesboro businesses, residents and non-profit organizations is listed below. Federal guidelines do not permit the City to use CARES money as a general stimulus.
The City has spent or earmarked just over $1.4 million of its CARES Act allocations to date. Approximately $2.5 million of the funds remain in the City’s coffer.