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CARES Act and FEMA Public Assistance Program

Information lifted from https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/senate-bill/3548/text. and https://www.fema.gov/media-library-data/1525468328389-4a038bbef9081cd7dfe7538e7751aa9c/PAPPG_3.1_508_FINAL_5-4-2018.pdf

S.3548 — 116th Congress (2019-2020)
Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act or the CARES Act

Bill Summary
This bill addresses the economic impacts of, and otherwise responds to, the COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak.

  • Provides for funding tax rebates to individuals, authorizes emergency loans to distressed businesses, including air carriers and
  • With respect to small businesses, establishes, and provides funding for, forgivable bridge loans; and provides additional funding for grants and technical assistance.
  • Note: $3 billion set aside for District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, and American Samoa.

The bill provides funding for:

  • • $1,200 tax rebates to individuals,
  • • $2,400 jointly filed married couples,
  • • $500 payments per qualifying child.
  • • The rebate begins phasing out when incomes exceed $75,000 (or $150,000 for joint filers).

To be an Eligible Individual:

  • Must have social security number
  • Must have filed at least 2018 return (recommended to file 2019 tax return ASAP)
  • Note: Tax day extended to July

Small Business Loans (Including Non Profits) -- $377 Billion
Small forgivable bridge business loans -- Including small private or public nonprofit organizations.

  • Small business – under 500 employees shall be eligible to receive a forgivable loan.
  • Forgivable Loan — Up to $10 million per business.
  • Any portion of that loan must be used to maintain payroll, keep workers on the books or pay for rent, mortgage and existing debt could be forgiven, provided workers stay employed through the end of June.
  • Relief for existing loans: cover six months of payments for small businesses already using Small Business Association loans.

Corporations - $500 Billion
For distressed corporations - (w/focus on workers)

  • Must pay back government loans and subject to public disclosures and other requirements.
  • Special inspector general created to oversee pandemic recovery.
  • President, vice president, members of the Cabinet and members of Congress barred from benefiting (including family).

Unemployment Benefits - $250 billion

  • 4 months expanded unemployment insurance,
  • Temporary Federal unemployment compensation of $600 per week (in addition to state payment)
  • Part-time, self-employed and gig economy workers now have access to Unemployment Insurance benefits through Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program.

Health Care - $100 billion for Hospitals

  • Insurance coverage: ALL private insurance plans cover COVID-19 treatments and vaccine and make ALL coronavirus tests free.
  • Food stamps: $15.5 billion is going to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP.)
  • American Indian reservations, Puerto Rico, Northern Mariana Islands, and American Samoa all get additional funds and access to federal nutrition programs.


  • Governors: Each state -- $3 billion to allocate at their discretion for emergency support grants to LEAs and institutions of higher education (IHEs) that have been most significantly impacted by the coronavirus.
  • Higher Education: $14.25 billion for emergency relief for Institutions of Higher Education to respond to the coronavirus.
  • Student loan payments -- principal, and interest are deferred for 6 months, through September 30, 2020, without penalty to the borrower for all federally-owned loans.


FEMA Public Assistance Program - $45 billion
How to Apply Video Tutorial:

Disaster Relief Fund for the immediate needs of state, local, tribal, territorial governments and
certain private nonprofit organizations to protect citizens and help them respond and recover
from the overwhelming effects of COVID-19.

Who is eligible?

  • States, tribal governments, local governments, and
  • Private Non Profit with an IRS effective ruling letter granting tax exemption under section 501(c), (d), or (e), including hospitals and related facilities, clinics, long-term care facilities, and outpatient facilities.

What is covered?

  • Costs must be directly tied to the performance of eligible work, documented, and reasonable in nature and amount.

How much is reimbursable?

  • FEMA will assist with such emergency protective measures at a 75% federal cost-share (with Applicants covering the other 25%).
  • FEMA will not duplicate assistance provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), to include the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), or other federal agencies.

Specific Details
FEMA may provide assistance for emergency protective measures including, but not limited to,
the following:

  • • If covered under Category B of the FEMA Public Assistance Program (See above Policy
  • Guide).
  • Management, control and reduction of immediate threats to public health and safety:
  • Emergency Operation Center costs
  • Training specific to the declared event
  • Disinfection of eligible public facilities
  • Technical assistance to state, tribal, territorial or local governments on emergency management and control of immediate threats to public health and safety
  • Communications of general health and safety information to the public
  • Medical sheltering (e.g. when existing facilities are reasonably forecasted to become overloaded in the near future and cannot accommodate needs)
    • FEMA provides Public Assistance funding to State, Territorial, Tribal, and local government Applicants for costs related to emergency sheltering for survivors.
      • Typically such sheltering occurs in facilities with large open spaces, such as schools, churches, community centers, armories, or other similar facilities. FEMA refers to these shelters as congregate shelters.
      • This includes sheltering domestic household pets and service and assistance animals.
    • Covers -- Shelter facility, staff, supplies and commodities, services
  • Purchase and distribution of food, water, ice, medicine, and other consumable supplies, to include personal protective equipment and hazardous material suits
  • Movement of supplies and persons
  • Transportation of evacuees, household pets, service animals, luggage, and durable medical equipment is eligible.
    • This includes emergency medical transportation.
      • Mode of transportation should be customary and appropriate for the work required.
      • FEMA does not provide Public Assistance funding for ambulance services that are covered by private insurance, Medicare, Medicaid, or a pre-existing private payment agreement.
  • Communications of general health and safety information to the public.
  • Reimbursement for state, tribe, territory and/or local government force account overtime costs.