Special to Iredell Free News

RALEIGH — Gov. Roy Cooper announced this week that the State of North Carolina will provide $28 million to local governments and communities in their response to the economic and public health impacts of COVID-19 through the Community Development Block Grant Coronavirus (CDBG-CV) program.

The program will be funded through the CARES Act by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to support North Carolina’s ongoing effort to fight COVID-19.

The N.C. Department of Commerce will provide CDBG-CV grants to local governments. This grant program will assist local governments with subsistence payments to prevent evictions and utility disconnections in municipalities with populations under 50,000 and counties with less than 200,000 people. This funding priority includes food distribution, testing and diagnosis, and employment training for frontline health care workers.

“The pandemic has presented difficult challenges to North Carolina’s smaller communities and businesses, and these funds will assist them in getting back on their feet,” said Commerce Secretary Anthony Copeland. “The CDBG-CV program will provide needed relief while also helping set the stage for the post-COVID economic recovery.”

In addition to public utilities and rent assistance, the funds will also provide public facilities support with broadband, communications, and the rehabilitation of buildings as well as financial assistance to small businesses with less than 100 employees and micro-enterprises with no more than five employees.

Local governments can apply for CDBG-CV grants beginning September 1 and will be awarded on a first-come, first-served basis. The program guidelines and application are available on the North Carolina Department of Commerce website at NCCommerce.com/covidrelief.

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