Union County, NJ — The Union County Freeholder Board today announced that the County is setting aside $4 million in federal CARES Act funds to assist local school districts with planning for re-opening this fall during the COVID-19 outbreak.
School districts may use their funds to help defray costs for a variety of measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19, such as health monitoring, cleaning/disinfecting protocols, and protective equipment.
“We are working closely with local school districts and health officials to ensure that students can begin their school year with health and safety as a top priority, said Freeholder Chairman Alexander Mirabella. “This is an unprecedented community effort, and everyone in the Union County family can help out by continuing to take every precaution against spreading this deadly virus.”
“The CARES Act funds will help local school districts in Union County’s 21 municipalities map out strategies that fit the needs of their students, teachers, staff, family members and surrounding communities,” said Daryl Palmieri, Interim Executive Superintendent of Schools for Union County.
Mirabella announced the funding plan in a conference call with local school districts on Thursday, July 28.
In accordance with statewide COVID-19 prevention guidelines, every person in Union County is required to observe social distance and wear masks when distance is impractical. Washing hands frequently, staying away from sick people, and staying home when sick are also among other precautions outlined by health experts.
Union County has also launched a $4 million relief grant program for small businesses impacted by COVID-19 through CARES Act funding, with an emphasis on certified minority, women, veteran, LGBTQ and disabled-owned businesses.
Other County assistance measures during the outbreak include organizing large scale donations of food for distribution to local social service agencies, and organizing drive-up food distribution events that have served more than 2,000 individual households so far.
The CARES (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security) Act was signed into law in March, providing more than $2 trillion in federal funds for economic aid during the COVID-19 outbreak.
For more information and updates on all Union County services during the COVID-19 outbreak, including guidance for using the Drive-Through Test Center at Kean University, visit ucnj.org/coronavirus-update.
For general information about COVID-19 and phone contacts for 24/7 assistance with questions, visit the New Jersey Department of Health at nj.gov/health.
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