Richland County Council approves funding for PPE for first responders among other coronavirus needs

Coronavirus: Flattening the curve

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - The Richland County Council has approved $1.5 million to help fight the coronavirus outbreak and support the community during this difficult time.

This aid will go to first responders, public safety personnel and those in need.

Council approved the following measures over the past two weeks:

  • $500,000 for personal protective equipment for the Richland County Sheriff’s Department, the Richland County Emergency Services Department, Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center and other essential departments
  • $500,000 to entities providing food to seniors and low-to-moderate income individuals
  • $500,000 to begin a rapid response and emergency relief program for small businesses

The money for these measures comes from the Richland County assigned fund balance, which has money that was leftover from the disaster response after the 2015 flood, as well as the committed fund balance, which is money set aside for disaster recovery.

Council also waived late fees for business licenses, hospitality and local accommodations taxes for 60 days.

County Council Chair Paul Livingston issued a statement on Council’s actions:

“The County has taken important steps to combat the spread of COVID-19 and to help our community recover. Richland County has seen its share of adversity in the past several years. This year will mark the five-year commemoration of the 2015 flood, which devastated so much of our community.

“Our response to that emergency showed we are resilient. We want to assure residents and business owners that just as Richland County Government responded then, we are responding now.

“We also are thankful for the assistance being provided at the federal level, state level and from private entities that will help in this recovery. Working together, my Council colleagues and I remain hopeful and encouraged that we will withstand the challenges posed by this current crisis.”

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