FEMA announced Wednesday that federal emergency aid has been made available for the state of North Carolina to supplement recovery efforts. The aid is available on a state and local level and can be applied to actions undertaken since January 20, 2020, and continuing.
The NC Department of Health and Human Services reported 636 cases of COVID-19 and one death in the state as of 10:15 am Thursday, March 26. The News & Observer, which has been keeping an hour by hour count of cases as reported by county health departments and major medical centers, had logged 690 cases by 1 pm Thursday.
North Carolina is the latest state to receive a disaster declaration. New York, Washington, California, Iowa, Louisiana, Texas and Florida have also been approved for FEMA funding.
Federal funding is available to state, tribal, and eligible local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations on a cost-sharing basis for emergency protective measures, including direct federal assistance under Public Assistance, for all areas affected by COVID-19.
Public Assistance refers to a FEMA program that funds the above entities at a federal cost share of 75 percent.
The declaration does not include direct assistance to individuals at this time, but FEMA is reviewing it and could expand the declaration to include individuals. Hazard mitigation grants – available for public action taken to prevent or reduce long term risk to life and property – are also being reviewed.
Gracia B. Szczech has been named as the Federal Coordinating Officer for federal recovery operations in the affected area.