This article is 2 years old. It was published on May 29, 2020.
ST. LOUIS, Mo. – Mayor Lyda Krewson during a news conference today unveiled plans for a historic $64 million funding package to address the health, humanitarian, and economic needs of St. Louisans as a result of the deadly COVID-19 pandemic.
“We know this global crisis will have devastating effects on our residents and businesses both in the short and long-term, and it’s our collective responsibility to prepare and plan for both,” Mayor Krewson said. “We must be intentional, deliberate, and thoughtful in recognizing that COVID-19-related hardships aren’t going away overnight and will be felt in every corner of our community, particularly our most vulnerable populations that have already been disproportionately affected.”
On May 6, the City received a wire transfer of $35.2 million from the State of Missouri in the form of federal emergency relief funds through the CARES Act. Mayor Krewson is working with the state to recoup the additional $17 million the City believes it should have received originally as to have an equal amount per capita to St. Louis County’s allocation.
Meanwhile, the Krewson Administration has been working diligently to develop a series of funding priorities for these CARES Act dollars, in addition to other federal resources like Community Development Block Grants and Emergency Solutions Grants, for the next 7 to 18 months.
Early next week, the Administration will work with the Board of Aldermen to introduce legislation for a $63.9 million COVID-19 funding package that includes major investments across several City departments, including the Department of Human Services (DHS), the Department of Health (DOH), the Department of Public Safety (DPS), the Community Development Administration (CDA), and the St. Louis Development Corporation (SLDC).
- Under the proposed package, DHS would receive $20 million to address homeless prevention, street outreach, emergency shelters, eviction mediation, and the looming housing crisis as rising unemployment threatens individuals and families from their homes. This includes more than $5 million for rental and mortgage assistance, $3 million for utility assistance, and more than $2 million for rapid rehousing.
- CDA would receive more than $16 million address increased needs associated with food insecurity/distribution, affordable housing, health care services, utility assistance, and short-term working capital assistance. This includes $4 million to work with SLDC to provide grants to small businesses that were significantly impacted by COVID-19 Stay at Home orders, $5 million for affordable housing construction, and $3 million in utility assistance.
- DOH would receive more than $7 million to bolster its already unprecedented response to the global pandemic at the local level, support housing opportunities for individuals living with AIDS, expand telehealth bandwidth for federally qualified health centers, and continue its expansion of contact tracing and access to COVID-19 testing to the public. This includes more than $2 million to increase staff capacity by adding 25 additional public health representatives and $1.5 million for personal protective equipment (PPE), training, and other support for early childcare facilities. A more comprehensive snapshot of every investment priority that’s outlined in the proposal is attached to this release.
Mayor Krewson looks forward to working with the Board of Aldermen and the Board of Estimate and Apportionment to bring this much-needed relief to people and businesses in the City.
“St. Louisans have been so brave and resilient in the face of such terrible uncertainty, heartbreak, and economic and human loss. But I know many of them are still hurting and looking to us for help. I am hopeful we can work together to see this important legislation passed in a timely manner and these resources distributed equitably to make a difference for those who need it the most,” Mayor Krewson stated.