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Emergency Commission approves COVID-19 funding for hospital staff, businesses, workers

State News

Approximately $35 million in turned-back federal funding was reallocated on Monday by the North Dakota Emergency Commission to support North Dakota’s COVID-19 response when it comes to hospitals, businesses and their workers.

The state received $1.25 billion from the Coronavirus Relief Fund as part of the $2.2 trillion CARES Act.

The roughly $35 million approved Monday was turned back from previously allocated federal funding, including $30 million turned back from the Bank of North Dakota and $5 million from North Dakota Information Technology.

The funding reallocated by the Emergency Commission includes: 

  • $15 million for hospital staffing to address the current shortage of nurses for COVID-19 beds in primary care and certain critical access hospitals.
  • $8 million to the Department of Commerce for expansion of the Hospitality Economic Resiliency Grant program to include the hotel and motel industry. Hotel and motel operators will be eligible for grants of up to $40,000 per location, with a maximum of $80,000 for applicants with multiple locations. Applicants must be a North Dakota business and demonstrate a negative financial impact from the pandemic.
  • $6.1 million to cover payroll costs for the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation correctional officers and medical staff who have been substantially dedicated to COVID-19 response and mitigation.
  • $2.65 million to Job Service North Dakota for reimbursable employers. This funding is meant to cover 50 percent of the unemployment insurance benefit costs that have been paid to the employees of reimbursable employers who experienced job loss or periods of layoff due to the pandemic. Reimbursable employers are entities such as schools, hospitals, long-term care entities, other health care entities, providers of services and care for the disabled/developmental disabilities, nonprofit child care, state and local governments, and other nonprofit entities.
  • $2.5 million for a grant program to provide medical expense assistance for first responders and health care workers who are eligible for expanded worker’s compensation benefits under Executive Orders 2020-12 and 2020-12.2. The program applies to first responders and health care workers who tested positive for COVID-19 and required medical treatment but were determined to be ineligible for worker’s compensation benefits because the job-related source of their COVID-19 infection could not be pinpointed.
  • $800,000 in grants for qualifying nonprofit organizations that have been negatively impacted by the pandemic and are at risk of folding due to the inability to generate revenue through performance events and education programs.

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