Gov. Walz Orders CARES Act Funding to Towns
Today, Governor Walz directed that $841 million of Federal CARES Act funding will be released to towns, cities, and counties. The Federal Government provided this money to the states to distribute to local governments as reimbursement for their COVID-19 related expenses. The Legislature considered this issue in its special session, but failed to pass a bill to release it. That allowed Gov. Walz to release the funding by executive order. Gov. Walz has decided to release the funding based on the plan considered by the legislature, reflected in Senate File 47 Use of these funds are restricted to the purposes allowed by Federal law, as we described in this article and in the forthcoming Township Insider article.
The bill uses population as the measure of the maximum funding available to a town, allowing a township to receive up to $25 per person in the township. Townships with a population over 5,000 are treated as cities under the bill, and will be eligible for about $75 per person. The funds must be used for an eligible expense by November 15, 2020, and any unused amount must be returned to the county by November 20, 2020.
All towns would be eligible for CARES Act funding, however, only towns over 199 in population would receive a direct payment from the State for expenses. Towns with population under 200 would need to apply to the county for reimbursement of their COVID-19 related expenses. With proper documentation of expenses, the county must pay the township the amount claimed.
Towns should go to the Dept of Revenue Website HERE, to begin the process of receiving their distribution.