Faith-based organizations, in addition to other community, volunteer, and non-profit organizations with emergency protective measure expenses related to the ongoing COVID-19 event, may be eligible for the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) Public Assistance program as part of a Presidential Major Disaster Declaration.
As part of its mission, FEMA provides grants to state, local, tribal, and territorial governments so they can continue offering critical and essential community services.
Types of organizations which provide critical services that may qualify for FEMA Public Assistance (PA) grants include:
Private schools that provide elementary or secondary education or an institution of higher education;
Hospitals and other medical-treatment facilities; and
Utilities including water, sewer, and electrical systems.
Types of non-critical, essential services that may be eligible for PA grants include:
Senior citizen and community centers or other community services;
Educational enrichment activities;
Custodial and day care services;
Disability residential services;
Assisted living and low-income housing;
Homeless shelters and rehabilitation services; and
Performing and community arts centers.
Additionally, when any organization provides emergency protective measures such as sheltering and feeding eligible at-risk individuals, FEMA may reimburse the costs of those services. The government and the organization must enter into an agreement for these services, even if the agreement is post-event; and the government could then reimburse the organization.
Only organizations with state or IRS tax exempt status may be considered. For more information about eligible essential and critical service providers, go online to https://www.fema.gov/ and reference the Public Assistance Program and Policy Guide.
Private Non-Profits who are providing food or conducting food distribution during this disaster should reach out to their county emergency management/civil defense agency so their efforts are visible to the county and can be coordinated with other feeding efforts in the county in order to reduce duplication of effort.
For the COVID-19 disaster, organizations that provide services of a non-critical, essential governmental nature are not required to first apply for a low-interest disaster loan from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) before being considered for a PA grant.
Interested agencies are invited to view a virtual Applicant Briefing on April 24th , April 28th, , and May 1st at 9:00 am. The briefing should last about 30 minutes, followed by a question and answer period. Email DOD.COVID19@hawaii.gov for the link to participate in the virtual Applicant Briefing.
The deadline to submit the Request for Public Assistance (RPA) for the COVID-19 is nationally extended and will remain open for the duration of the Public Health Emergency, as declared by the Secretary of Health and Human Services, unless an earlier deadline is deemed appropriate by the Assistant Administrator, Recovery Directorate.
Under the PA Program, FEMA awards grants to assist State and local governments and eligible Private Non-Profit entities with their recovery efforts. The declaration currently provides funds for eligible emergency protective measures. The federal share of the funding is 75 percent of the eligible costs.