MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WIAT) — Governor Kay Ivey has awarded COVID-19 Community Development Block Grants to three counties and one city to support their efforts of recovery from the pandemic.
The city of Bessemer was awarded $70,000. Hale County and Sumter County each received $200,000. Marion County received $300,000. A total of $770,000 was awarded by Gov. Ivey on Thursday.
Additional grants to other Alabama cities and counties will be announced as applications are processed, Gov. Ivey says. The funds from the grants are required to be used on projects relating to the recovery from or preventing the spread of COVID-19 and other future infectious diseases.
“Every Alabama worker, especially the frontline workers, are to be commended for their courage and endurance during the COVID-19 pandemic,” Gov. Ivey said in a written release. “These funds will continue to assist those who were negatively affected and are trying to come back from such a difficult time.”
According to officials, Bessemer will use the funds to assist local small businesses with grants and to provide health and safety equipment for public facilities.
Hale County plans to purchase an emergency response vehicle to better equip first responders when treating those with life-threatening illnesses such as COVID-19.
Marion County says that they will purchase and staff a mobile health clinic to ensure that all county residents have access to COVID-19 testing and treatment.
Sumter County plans to rehabilitate the roof of the Sumter County Health Services Building, which is the headquarters of the Sumter County Emergency Management Agency and other health services providers who are working on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic response.
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development made the funds available to the state.
Alabama counties and entitlement communities receiving the CDBG-COVID funds were required to make an application with the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs.
“These funds are helping local leaders and health care providers because they are in the best position to determine what their areas need most,” said ADECA Director Kenneth Boswell in a written statement. “ADECA joins Governor Ivey in assisting these communities as they work to help Alabama continue recovering from this global pandemic.”