WICHITA FALLS, Texas (TNN) - Wichita Falls is set to receive millions of dollars in COVID relief grant money.
Officials shared how this money can be spent and how this could impact the community.
The Wichita Falls City Council approved an ordinance for a reimbursement grant for up to $5.8 million from the CARES Act, though funds have been allocated this is still a work in progress.
“So, the key is balancing," said Jessica Williams, Wichita Falls Chief Financial Officer. “Making sure that we have the allocated cost so that we actually incur a cost that meets the guidelines of the grant. Then we can use 25% of that additional funding.”
The funds can be used for medical expenses, public health expenses and some payroll expenses for employees specifically handling COVID-19 related responses. At the same time, it cannot be something previously budgeted by the city.
“There are multiple restrictions on the grant, however, we have received $1.1 million in grant funds because cities have received 20%, but we have to make sure that we are in compliance with this Grant guidance,” said Williams.
The other grant addressed Tuesday was the community development block grant that will help several groups.
“When the sky started falling back in March, nonprofits were right here in the middle of the fray, just like the healthcare workers in the grocery store workers. They were providing food, shelter and other life necessities for Wichitans. We’re losing their jobs and falling through the cracks,” said Leslie Schaffner, president of the Wichita Falls Area Community Foundation.
“So, right now, we’ve reached out to some of our nonprofit agencies as we work with them for other CDBG funds to understand their COVID related needs," said Terry Floyd, director of development services. "Then potentially bring back a package for council consideration of an amendment to our annual plan.”
They are currently accepting applications through Friday and are working on a quick return.
“We’ve already been in contact with some of our representatives from our area offices about how best to get that money as quickly as possible once we’ve met our plan,” said Floyd.