Augusta and Kennebec County Awarded Funds to Address COVID-19 Pandemic

(STL.News) – United States Attorney Halsey B. Frank announced that the Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs (OJP) has awarded $77,591 to the City of Augusta and $58,008 to Kennebec County to address the public safety challenges posed by the outbreak of COVID-19.

OJP awarded the grants as part of $850 million available under the Coronavirus Emergency Supplemental Funding program, authorized by the recent stimulus legislation signed by President Trump.  This program allows eligible state, local and tribal governments to apply immediately for these critical funds.  OJP is moving quickly, aiming to have funds available for drawdown as soon as possible after receiving an application.  OJP has also made statewide awards in addition to awards to local jurisdictions.  A list of all awards is at https://bja.ojp.gov/program/cesf/awards.

“Public safety professionals in Maine are doing phenomenal work as they protect Mainers during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said U.S. Attorney Frank.  “I hope these emergency grants to Augusta and Kennebec County will help keep our local partners safe on the job as they keep all of us safe.”

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security, or CARES, Act gives jurisdictions considerable latitude in the use of funds for dealing with COVID-19.  Potential uses include hiring personnel, paying overtime, purchasing protective equipment and distributing resources to hard-hit areas.  Funds may also be used to help correctional facilities cover costs related to COVID-19, including, but not limited to, sanitation, contagion prevention and measures designed to address the related medical needs of inmates, detainees and correctional personnel.

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Applications are due by May 29, 2020.  OJP will fund successful applicants on a rolling basis as it receives applications.  Grantees may apply the funds retroactively to January 20, 2020, subject to federal rules.