CARES Act funding broken down; bulk goes to unemployment trust

WILMINGTON — More than a third of Delaware’s CARES Act money has gone to the state’s Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund.

The CARES Act, which stands for Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security, was passed by both the House and the Senate in late March before officially being signed into law March 27.

This week, Gov. John Carney presented the breakdown of how the state is using the $900 million it received from the CARES Act. The Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund received $350 million of that.

John Carney

“These are significant commitments,” Gov. Carney said of the state’s plan to use the funding. “We thank our congressional delegation, Sen. (Tom) Carper, Sen. (Chris) Coons and Congresswoman (Lisa) Blunt Rochester for their support of the CARES Act. For the next relief package that is still being worked on, we’re hopeful they’re able to push something over the goal line, although it looks a little uncertain at the moment.”

The second-most money went to the state’s child care assistance program with $128,055,262. Gov. Carney said this will help child care centers moving into the fall to provide backup support for children who are not in school.

Delaware’s Relief Grants Program was next on the list, receiving $100 million. The program, which is a joint initiative from the state and New Castle County, seeks to “give Delaware small businesses and nonprofits access to funds to cover expenses and provide relief related to COVID-19.”

The second round of applications for this program opened today. There will be a third and final round of applications in early November.

Gov. Carney said the state received 1,645 applications in the first round, with $54.4 million of the $100 million available this round. More than half the applicants were minority or women-owned businesses.

Of the businesses and nonprofits that applied, 75% had annual revenues under $1 million and 44% were under $250,000, while 75% of applicants have fewer than 10 employees and more than half of applicants have fewer than five.

Two-thirds of the dollar amount was accounted for by “disproportionately impacted industries,” such as food services, retail and personal care.

“I’ve said all along that some businesses have sacrificed more than others,” Gov. Carney said.

The state has also used $80 million from the CARES Act on COVID-19 testing, and that figure could increase, Gov. Carney said.

The rest of the breakdown of how the state is using its CARES Act funding is:
• $22 million for state agency pandemic-related expenditures.
• $20 million for broadband infrastructure.
• $20 million for the Community Provider Relief Fund.
• $15 million for Delaware State Housing Authority rent/utility assistance.
• $12 million for the COVID-19 contact tracing program.
• $10 million for the Rapid Workforce Training and Redevelopment Initiative.
• $7.2 million for HELP small business loans.
• $4 million for school-aged child care programs.
• $2.7 million for poultry-grower support.
• $2 million for local government allocations outside of New Castle County.
• $800,000 for public school transportation.

Helpful Coronavirus links

Delaware Division of Health Coronavirus Page
CDC: About the Coronavirus Disease 2019
CDC: What to do if You Are Sick
Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center
AP News Coronavirus Coverage
Reopening Delaware: Resources for Businesses
Delaware Phase 2 guidance

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