$20M available in local COVID-19 aid for daycares, farmers, health businesses

Montgomery County daycares and preschools affected by the coronavirus pandemic can apply for grants up to $30,000. CHRIS STEWART / STAFF
Montgomery County daycares and preschools affected by the coronavirus pandemic can apply for grants up to $30,000. CHRIS STEWART / STAFF

Credit: Chris Stewart

Credit: Chris Stewart

Montgomery County officials provided new details Wednesday about three coronavirus aid programs totaling $20 million to assist farmers, health care providers, preschools and those offering daycare programs that serve both children and adults.

“Our entire community has felt the effects of the pandemic, the shutdowns and our uncertainty about the future,” said Montgomery County Commissioner Debbie Lieberman.

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The grants, which don’t have to be repaid, come from Montgomery County’s more than $92 million in federal CARES Act funds. From that, $5 million is going to aid daycares and preschools, $5 million to assist farmers and other agricultural businesses and $10 million to health care providers hurt by the coronavirus pandemic, according to the county.

Individual day cares and preschools may be eligible for grants up to $30,000, Lieberman said.

“Our daycares and our preschools have been hit extremely hard. And we hope that these new grants can help them fill some of the gaps from their lost revenue,” she said. “These organizations provide an incredible, necessary service to our communities … to care for our families, and be there as a place for our children youngest children to thrive and actually a lot of them to be fed.”

Lieberman said the grants are not limited to daycares for children, but also for those providing services to adults.

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“When you’re caring for your parents or spouse that needs to have care, all of these services are so critical to our community,” she said.

Grants of up to $100,000 are available to Montgomery County farmers, who didn’t stop planting or raising livestock while many other businesses faced pandemic shutdowns, said Montgomery County Commissioner Carolyn Rice.

“Our agriculture businesses are key to the community because they supply the basic human need for food. We’re lucky to have a very strong farm community across our county,” she said. “It would be difficult to get out of a public health crisis with a shortage of healthy food.”

County staff will be at the Montgomery County Fairgrounds & Event Center from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. daily through Friday to explain the program and allow farmers to apply, according to the county.

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Grants of up to $100,000 will be made available to eligible hospitals — both public and private — medical centers, health clinics and other health service providers, according to the county.

The health care grants can be used for mortgage and rent, utilities, costs related to immunizations, coronavirus testing and contact tracing, PPE supplies, technology, and other public health expenses resulting from the pandemic.

Similar to the other programs, the funds can be used for expenses either already incurred or anticipated between March 1 and Dec. 31.

“Our hospitals, medical centers, health clinics and other providers have spent the last several months fighting COVID-19 while trying their best to keep their own health care workers safe from the virus,” Rice said. “This has been a tireless job and we hope that these grants can help our health care institutions continue to battle with this terrible virus.”

Eligibility requirements

Daycare and preschool grants

· Be licensed by the Ohio Department of Education for child day care businesses

· Be physically located in Montgomery County

· Benefit individuals living in Montgomery County

· Operate a childcare program licensed by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services that has at least a three-star rating through Step Up To Quality, Ohio’s tiered quality rating and improvement system

Agriculture grants

· Be physically located in Montgomery County

· Benefit individuals living in Montgomery County

· Be able to provide financial records to support the grant request, including reconciling and reporting the use of federal funds and tracking and reporting number of clients served and demographic information

· Submit documentation to the Office of CARES Act, including your last two years' of Schedule F forms

Health care grants

· Proposed program services must benefit individuals living in Montgomery County

· Organization must be physically located in Montgomery County

· Organization must be able to meet program technical requirements, including the ability to provide financial records to support the request, including the ability to reconcile and report the use of federal funds, as well as be able to report the number of clients served and other demographic information

Other grants available

Grants of $10,000 remain available to small businesses impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. More than $6.8 million in grants have been approved for small businesses since the start of the program, said Montgomery County Administrator Michael Colbert.

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Mortgage and rental assistant grants of up to $10,000 are also available to eligible county residents who experienced a loss of income after March 1 due to the pandemic. The loss of income could have been caused by a layoff, reduced work hours, furlough or reduction in pay, according to the county.

The county also has a program for eligible nonprofits to receive grants up to $100,000 and another that offers grants up to $1 million to qualifying educational institutions.

More information about all the county’s grants and instructions for applying are online at www.mcohiocares.org.