NCJA Info re COVID-19 Stimulus Bill
Thank you to NCJA for the following detail about the COVID-19 Stimulus Bill. Read carefully as there are internal links to the Emergency Supplemental Funding Program allocations by state, city, and county allocations, as well as a link to the full 335 pages of stimulus bill text.
There is also a link to a 56-page summary, most of which, I think you will find very useful. Here’s the information provided by NCJA.
On March 27, President Trump signed the stimulus bill known as the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, or the CARES Act in response to the growing COVID-19 pandemic. The bill is a $2 trillion stimulus package meant to: stabilize the national economy; provide immediate resources to most Americans; extend unemployment insurance; provide relief for industries particularly impacted by social distancing; provide blanket support to states and local governments; and, provide additional funding for grant programs and federally-funded services intended to help communities respond to the pandemic. It also includes billions of dollars to help the criminal justice and mental health systems respond to this crisis.
The bill creates the Coronavirus Emergency Supplemental Funding (CESF) Program to address immediate first responder and longer-term response needs of state and local justice systems. The bill provides $850 million for CERF through the Byrne Justice Assistance Grant (Byrne JAG) Program formula “to prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus, domestically or internationally…”. Congress chose the Byrne JAG formula as the best mechanism for getting new funding out to the states and localities as quickly as possible and to respond to needs from across the justice system.
BJA will be expediting the processing of the CESF awards. The solicitation was released on March 30 and applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Direct BJA grantees, including the SAAs and the localities receiving direct awards, should expect an award within about one week of submitting their applications. (View the state allocations and the direct local allocations.)
The final bill includes numerous other provisions of interest to justice system policymakers and practitioners, including:
- $100 million in additional, one-time funding for the Bureau of Prisons “to prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus, domestically or internationally, including the impact of coronavirus on the work of the Department of Justice.”
- $425 million to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration to increase access to mental health services through Community Behavioral Health Clinics, suicide prevention programs, and emergency response spending that can target support where it is most needed, such as outreach to those experiencing homelessness.
- $100 billion in grants to hospitals, public entities, not-for-profit entities, and Medicare and Medicaid enrolled suppliers and institutional providers to cover unreimbursed health care related expenses or lost revenues attributable to the public health emergency resulting from the coronavirus.
- $185 million to the Health Resources and Services Administration to support rural critical access hospitals, rural tribal health and telehealth programs, and poison control centers.
- $5 billion for the Community Development Block Grant program to enable states, counties, and cities to rapidly respond to COVID-19 and the economic and housing impacts caused by it, including the expansion of community health facilities, childcare centers, food banks, and senior services.
- $4 billion in Emergency Solutions Grants to address the impact of COVID-19 among individuals and families who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, and to support additional homeless assistance, prevention, and eviction prevention assistance.
- Extension of the Medicaid Community Mental Health Services demonstration that provides coordinated care to patients with mental health and substance use disorders and expansion of the demonstration to two additional states.
Take care and be safe out there!
Barry Bryant – Executive Director