Deschutes County Commissioners dole out $4.4 million in CARES Act funding

Deschutes County Commissioners have allocated the remaining $4.39 million of federal funding from the CARES Act to support local families and businesses impacted by COVID-19 and continue to invest in local public health response to the pandemic.

The County’s investments include:

Support for children, families, individuals and most vulnerable populations – $1.32 million

$1.17 million to support housing and basic needs, including rent and mortgage assistance and food recovery, distributed to NeighborImpact. $150,000 to support the Bend Heroes Foundation’s proposed Veterans’ Village project.

“We’re excited to be able to partner with local nonprofits to get this money into the hands of people that desperately need it,” said Deschutes County Commissioner Tony DeBone.

Childcare to support working families – $1,065,700

$650,000 to support child care for school-age children through Better Together, a local non-profit organization that focuses on regional, cross-sector partnerships that work to improve education outcomes for children and youth from cradle to career.

Better Together is working to support children and families by giving kids a safe, supported place to learn. $400,000 to support regional childcare providers, distributed through NeighborImpact. $15,700 to support expanded youth programming through Deschutes County 4-H.

Support for local businesses – $772,000

$572,000 in rebates for local restaurant, hotel, pool and spa owners for Environmental Health fees paid to Deschutes County Health Services.

$200,000 for business assistance through grants and case management services, distributed through Central Oregon Intergovernmental Council and/or local chambers.

“There is no doubt that COVID-19 has been challenging for local business owners,” said Commissioner Phil Henderson. “We want to do everything we can to continue to support business owners. In addition to direct financial support, we also recognize the critical importance of investing in childcare and programs that will offer care for school-age children so we can support families as they return to work.”

Public health response – $983,500

A $983,500 investment in local public health response, which includes support for additional COVID-19 testing, a new Health and Social Services navigator to serve vulnerable populations, support for bilingual community engagement and education and support for a community survey to inform public health messaging, outreach and education.

“Our Public Health team continues to work tirelessly to protect the health and safety of our community,” said Deschutes County Commissioner Patti Adair. “We hope these additional investments will bolster local COVID-19 testing and equip our Public Health team to continue to do everything we can to help our communities stay healthy.”

Commissioners also allocated $250,000 to cover costs related to COVID-19 response, including expanded Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave for employees and modifications to County facilities.

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