COLUMBUS – House Democrats announced Monday the state Controlling Board approved another round of federal funding to support Ohio’s efforts to respond to the COVID-19 outbreak, including $300 million in federal funding to offset Ohio’s K-12 schools and colleges and university’s costs of keeping students and staff safe in the fall.
“There are unprecedented challenges to consider in making the decision on returning to the classroom this fall and as schools make plans to prepare they should have confidence that the state is providing resources to meet the needs of keeping everyone safe,” said House Minority Leader Emilia Strong Sykes (D-Akron). “State and federal lawmakers need to continue working to make sure our school districts have the resources they need to protect students and staff all while ensuring an enriching learning environment.”
The Controlling Board Monday approved the use of federal CARES Act funding for the following state agencies to support their efforts in controlling the COVID-19 outbreak in Ohio:
- $200 million to the Ohio Department of Higher Education;
- $100 million to the Department of Education;
- $169.6 million to the Ohio Department of Medicaid;
- $36.8 million to Ohio’s local health departments;
- $63.5 million to the Ohio Department of Health;
- $15.7 million to the Department of Public Safety;
- $3 million to the Department of Natural Resources
Additional federal funds approved by the Controlling Board includes $62 million for Ohio hospitals serving rural and underserved communities, $22.5 million to behavioral health providers, $10 million to fund a direct economic loan program to assist small businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, and $517,000 for the Ohio Arts Council to support community art and education in communities around Ohio.
“Directing these federal funds to where they’re most needed will allow Ohioans to get back to work and into the classroom safely,” said Rep. Jack Cera (D-Bellaire), who is a member of the Controlling Board. “These allocations for K-12 and Higher Education are in addition to other funds that these schools have already received.”