Mayor London Breed recently announced that the city will channel $6 million from unspent HCO funds to the Right to Recover program for COVID-19-positive San Franciscans. The money will help the city’s health care system address the crisis of high-risk patients. Currently, there are nearly 3,000 COVID-19-positive San Franciscans, and the city is already facing a significant shortage of hospital beds.
These funds can be used for various purposes, but the counties are allowed to retain any assets purchased through the program. Recipients are also permitted to use Recovery Funds for non-federal matching requirements, such as FEMA disaster assistance and Medicaid. The rules for using Recovery Funds vary by recipient, but they will still have to meet certain criteria. The Treasury’s Overview of the Final Rule provides more information. It’s worth reading the entire rule to get a clearer picture of how the funds are allocated.
Recovery Funds are available to invest in broadband infrastructure, COVID-19 mitigation programs, public facilities, housing, and neighborhoods. The guidelines provide guidance on $65.1 billion in direct federal aid to America’s counties. Since the Recovery Fund was established, the agency has collaborated with the Department of Treasury and the State to develop priorities to meet the needs of county residents. However, local governments with less than 250,000 residents do not need to develop a Recovery Plan Performance Report.
FRF is being used to help victims of the pandemic and address long-standing challenges in their communities. Investments related to pandemic recovery hold the greatest promise for a successful recovery. They also address systemic inequities. However, investments unrelated to pandemic recovery may overlook the immediate needs of affected people and miss an opportunity to address structural inequalities. So, it’s important to learn about the various ways in which to use the FRF to make a difference in your community.