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City Council Introduces $1 Million Community Support and Recovery Fund to Aid COVID-19 Community Response

Council President Pat Davis is sponsoring the legislation, R-20-30.

City Councilor Pat Davis has introduced new legislation, The Coronavirus Community Support & Recovery Act, (R-20-30), making $1,000,000 in emergency grants available to community organizations working to feed, house and support residents in need due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Councilor Pat Davis:

As a city, we’ve spent the past few weeks in triage mode adjusting City resources and services to meet the daily challenges of providing for the people and businesses in this extraordinary time of crisis. Our City workers, together with the Mayor’s team and Council, have risen to that challenge far more quickly and effectively than many other cities around the country and we’ve made sure that the Mayor and departments have the authority and resources to continue meeting the day-to-day challenges.

But we know that this crisis will not be short-lived, so we also have to plan for the longer-term community care and recovery that will be needed. This legislation is a down payment on that commitment.

In conversations with community providers, constituents, and other government partners, Councilors have been exploring ways to provide long-term care for the growing number of those in need.

Councilors have heard from countless individuals, shuttered businesses and organizations offering to help a neighbor by providing meals, housing or financial help, and that will become even more important as this pandemic expands and more and more families face the tough decisions about which bills to pay.

This legislation provides a way to support those willing to help others in need on a long-term basis.

The Coronavirus Community Support & Recovery Act, (R-20-30) provides for $1 million in new funds available to non-profits, including faith-based organizations, who provide food, housing and other emergency support for Albuquerque residents experiencing economic hardship due to COVID-19.

The legislation:

  • Provides for $1 million in a new fund available to non-profits, including faith-based organizations, who provide food, housing and other emergency support for Albuquerque residents experiencing economic hardship due to COVID-19.
  • Requires the administration to develop an online application process within 7 days.
  • Establishes an application review committee made up of City Councilors and the Mayor’s staff to quickly review and recommend applications for approval.
  • Requires that final approval of all grants or contracts comes to the City Council, providing public transparency on expenditures.
  • Encourages applicants to partner with local businesses, including restaurants, to provide services; helping to inject critical spending into the local economy.

Councilor Davis notes that this program is designed to comply with federal CARES Act provisions allowing for federal reimbursement of local expenditures to help those impacted by COVID-19.

“If the federal government can make good on their pledge to begin reimbursing these emergency expenses quickly, this can become a revolving fund for support and recovery citywide,” Davis adds.

The legislation will be introduced at the Monday, April 6th meeting of the City Council and placed on the agenda for a vote at the Council’s next meeting, currently scheduled for April 20th, provided the Council does not hold an emergency meeting or other meetings beforehand.