Dec. 1 marks the one-month deadline for states to either spend or earmark federal dollars granted through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act to cover COVID-19 related expenses.
According to the most recent letter from the Connecticut Office of Policy and Management to the state comptroller, Connecticut has approximately $196 million left to allocate by the end of the month.
The letter outlines approved earmarked programs that will be or have already received funds from the Coronavirus Relief Fund.
The CARES Act, passed in April 2020, allocated $1.38 billion to Connecticut.
These funds can be used to cover COVID-19 related expenses, including the acquisition of personal protective equipment, testing, cleaning, and economic support.
To date, Connecticut has spent fund dollars on a series of programs, including $50 million for small business grants, $40 million for housing assistance, $164.5 million for education, and over $230 million for testing.
While the Lamont administration continues to evaluate where the remaining CRF dollars will have the greatest impact, the business community strongly urges the governor and agencies to provide additional assistance to struggling businesses.
Since the funds were released to the state, only about 6% of available dollars have gone towards small business relief and rental and housing assistance.
The administration is confident that they will be able to earmark the remaining funds by the Dec. 30 deadline.
The letter to the comptroller indicated an additional approved but unspecified amount earmarked for the Department of Economic and Community Development for small business and economic relief.