St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson has announced a plan to distribute $64 million in federal aid intended to bolster the city’s response to the coronavirus.
Some of the largest shares of funding will pay for housing assistance, small-business aid and protective equipment, testing supplies and cleaning services. Krewson said she hopes that the funding will ease the economic fallout for people who have been hurt most by the pandemic.
The small-business support will prioritize businesses that have fewer than 25 employees, or that are located in federally recognized “economically distressed areas,” which are mostly located in north and south St. Louis.
“Federal and state unemployment will run out, but our people will still be suffering,” Krewson said. “Our COVID-19-related hardships are not going to go away overnight. It will be felt in every corner of our community for months and likely years to come.”
The funding plan will provide:
- $7 million to the city's Health Department. That provides $2.5 million to hire staff — including 25 contact tracers — and acquire contact tracing technology, as well as $1.5 million to early child care programs.
- $18 million to the Human Services Department, including $5.4 million to rental and mortgage support, $2.5 million for rapid rehousing programs and $2 million to emergency shelters.
- $15 million to the Community Development Administration, including $5 million to construct affordable housing, $4 million to the St. Louis Development Corporation for programs that support small businesses, $3 million in utility assistance and $2 million for food delivery to vulnerable populations.
- $12 million for personal protective equipment, testing supplies and cleaning services.
- $7 million for contingency planning.
- $2 million to government payroll costs related to the pandemic.
- $1.4 million to police, fire and correctional facilities.
Most of the funding comes from a $35 million grant from the federal CARES Act. The city also received grants from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s community development program and the Federal Emergency Management Agency, according to Krewson.
Krewson said she will present the plan to the Board of Aldermen next week for revisions and approval.
Read the proposed budget:
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