Redwood City – From connecting students with teachers to helping small businesses stay afloat, the County of San Mateo’s efforts to provide local pandemic relief now tops $259 million.
“That’s a very large number. And it’s also a once-in-a-generation investment that has benefitted our residents and lessened the very real pain the COVID pandemic has caused,” said Don Horsley, president of the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors.
The County today released a fact sheet showing total COVID-19 relief funds, from the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020 through Wednesday, July 13, 2022, total $259,033,780.
Funding sources include $6.7 million from the local Measure K half-cent sales tax, $54.9 million from the federal government allocated specifically to San Mateo County (see note below) and $197.3 million in a combination of private grants, donations, matching funds and other leveraged sources, including state funding. Of the more than $259 million, $230,211,288 (88.87 percent) has been spent or is allocated.
Investments in COVID-19 Relief Programs
► Rental assistance and housing support – $125 million to help renters stay in their homes, provide other housing assistance (14,633 applications approved).
► Food support – $73 million for Second Harvest Food Bank and the Great Plates Meal Delivery program to ensure healthy meals for the most vulnerable: 2,974,699 meals distributed.
► Direct assistance for individuals and families – $16.5 million for assistance for immigrants not eligible for state or federal relief (16,017 applications approved) and individuals and families in unincorporated areas of the county (263 individuals/households assisted).
► Emergency relief for small businesses – $21.9 million for grants to small businesses, restaurants, wineries, breweries and small food-operator startups; support for digital tools and training; other financial assistance and relief programs (1,551 grants approved; 5,400 businesses received relief from permit fees).
Funding sources include more than $10 million from San Mateo County Strong, created by the Board of Supervisors in March 2020 to accept and then distribute donations to those in need
► Childcare, Learning and Summer Enrichment – $11.4 million to support child care and early learning centers, summer enrichment programs and learning hubs (437 grants approved).
► Access to technology – $6.4 million to expand access to San Mateo County Public WiFi to connect students and at-home workers to the Internet (284 new sites, with 13,234 average monthly users).
► Relief for nonprofit organizations – $3.9 million to assist local nonprofit agencies, including arts and culture organizations, to weather the pandemic (190 grants approved).
San Mateo County Recovery Initiative
As the impacts of the pandemic unfolded in early 2020, the County brought together a diverse array of individuals to help inform a relief efforts. This became the San Mateo County Recovery Initiative: Creating a Better Future through Collaboration, Advancing Equity and Inclusion.
“We recognized early on that we as a community needed to focus on those areas of the county that would be hardest-hit by the pandemic. And by hardest hit, I mean directly by the virus itself and economically,” Horsley said. “Our efforts have focused on these areas while also providing relief for as many others as we possibly can. This is what local government is all about.”
Note: Federal funding allocated to San Mateo County is from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act and the American Rescue Plan Act.
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