Port Huron, MI — Eight-hundred-eighty million dollars have been appropriated toward COVID-19 assistance statewide. The money is part of a federally funded budget supplement.
The monetary assistance includes a $2 per hour pay increase for direct care workers, $125 million for child care costs, $100 million in hazard pay for first responders and local governments, and another $100 million for small business grants. It also includes over $100 million for rental assistance, wireless hotspot connectivity, health and safety programs, and help for food banks and domestic violence shelters.
Addressing the allocation for shelters, Sarah Prout Rennie, Executive Director of the Michigan Coalition to End Domestic and Sexual Violence, said she was proud of the efforts of local organizations, and “grateful that our elected officials are providing much-needed funding to help support shelters that have worked hard to keep their doors open and continue to provide essential services for victims and survivors.”
The bill was sponsored by Senator Jim Stamas, a Midland Republican. Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed it into law last week. Whitmer said that the bill and the 2020 budget agreement have put the full amount of the CARES Act money to use and called on Congress to provide more money to address the 2021 budget shortfall.
Reporting for WGRT – Jennie McClelland