Organizations invited to apply for EllisCares funding

Staff Writer
Hays Daily News
Hays Daily News

The Ellis County Administration and Emergency Management staff are working closely with partner agencies in Ellis County to identify eligible expenditures for these funds in accordance with the guidelines developed by the U.S. Treasury and the State of Kansas.

According to state guidelines, priority must be given to medical and public health expenses.

There are two categories for the funding:

Reimbursement – The county can collect COVID related invoices and receipts for expenses between March 1 and July 31st for reimbursements.

Direct Aid Plan – The county can develop plans for how they intend to use funds for direct aid programs in Ellis County.

Eligible purposes for which funds may be used are (1) expenditures due to the public health emergency of COVID-19, (2) not accounted for in a budget, (3) expenses incurred between March 1 and December 30, 2020.

“We have made the application process as simple as possible by placing an application portal on our website,” said Ellis County Administrator J. D. Cox. He encouraged applications to be submitted as soon as possible with a deadline of Noon on August 3. “The State is wishing to invest these funds into our local community as soon as possible, and that has given us an incredibly short window to accomplish our task,” Cox said.

Some examples of eligible expenses are personal protective equipment, telemedicine capability, COVID testing, technological improvements to facilitate distance learning, improving telework capabilities, sanitizing products, and grants to small businesses and nonprofits to reimburse the costs of business interruptions caused by closures.

These expenses are not eligible: expenses for programs outside of Ellis County, damages covered by insurance, payroll not dedicated to mitigation or response to COVID-19, expenses covered under other grant programs, donated items or services, workforce bonuses, legal settlements, severance pay, loss of revenue.

“If your idea is not specifically in the “not eligible” list above, I would encourage folks to go ahead and apply. When we review the applications, we will determine eligibility for any that are questionable.”

Projects will be considered based on: Identified principles and impact categories, Available funding and County Commission and State approval.

If approved, recipients will be required to: Track 100% of expenditures; Report and provide documentation to Ellis County for every expenditure; Sign a Memorandum of Understanding with Ellis County; Expend 100% of the funding before December 30, 2020

“We formed a Think Tank of 26 tremendous representatives of all facets and all areas of our county community. I appreciate their work so much,” said Cox.

The EllisCares Think Tank determined to categorize applications that would meet Basic Needs, Social Needs: Socially Connect and Physically Distance, Aging Needs, Educational Needs and Healthy Minds Needs.

Cox further elaborated, “The group also determined five guiding principles in their consideration: Community Impact, Action-oriented, Accountability, Leadership, and Equity and Inclusion.

Groups that would like to apply for funding are encourage to go to www.ellisco.net and click on the “EllisCARES” link and fill out the CRF County Direct Aid Program Application.

Email your questions to: EllisCARES@ellisco.net.

Project funding applications are due Noon, Monday August 3, 2020.