Community Resource Grant

COVID-19 Community Resource Grant Guidelines

Blue Earth County recognizes the important role certain community support organizations play in providing needed services for Blue Earth County residents, particularly in times of economic distress.  Community support organizations that help provide housing services, food, childcare programs, employment opportunities, and access to social and health services mitigate the demand on County social service and public health programs.

The County further recognizes that community support organizations have been impacted by the current economic environment caused by the COVID-19 public health crisis in much the same way as business have been impacted.  The County has, therefore, established a program to provide support for community organizations to assist those organizations in meeting the needs of Blue Earth County residents affected by the COVID-19 public health crisis.

The Blue Earth County Community Resource Grant Program will be administered through the County Administrator’s office.  Organization representatives who have questions or need assistance in completing applications should contact:

Blue Earth County Administration
Attn: Josh Milow, Deputy County Administrator
204 South Fifth Street,
PO BOX 8608 Mankato, MN 56002-8608
josh.milow@blueearthcountymn.gov 507-304-4109

Organizations are also encouraged to apply for all other available COVID-19 related funding programs offered by the U.S. federal government, the State of Minnesota and other granting/loaning agencies.  Organizations applying for and receiving funds through these programs are still eligible to receive a grant from the County. Prioritization will be given to organizations that have not received funding from other sources.

*Prior to applying, please read through the list of Eligible Organizations and Ineligible organizations.  Also, at the bottom of the page, the application process it outlined.  Applications will be accepted between October 14 and October 31, 2020.

COMMUNITY RESOURCE GRANT APPLICATION

Eligible Organizations

Organizations must meet the following criteria as of March 1, 2020 to be eligible for grant funds:

1)    Have a physical location or operating presence in Blue Earth County under which the Organization provides services to help Blue Earth County residents obtain or maintain housing, food, childcare, employment opportunities, general access to social or health services, and/or similar community support resources.

2)    Be one of the following entities:

        •    An IRS 501(c)(3) Charitable or Nonprofit Organization registered with the Minnesota Secretary of State as an active Minnesota Non-Profit Corporation providing programs, activities or expenditures deemed by Blue Earth County as necessary and prudent in advance of the objectives stated in criteria 1 and able to demonstrate that the Organization has been directly and adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic with respect to:

            i)    at least a 10% impact in comparable profits/losses related to fixed/capital costs, operating costs, personnel expenses or                  revenue loss not compensated through commensurate reductions in operations or expenditures; or

            ii)    at least a 10% increase in eligible programming and/or service demand/ expenses related to fixed/capital costs, operating              costs, personnel expenses, or other service/program costs not addressed or covered through a commensurate increase in                    revenues.

        •    Any IRS 501(c) Charitable or Non-Profit Organization registered with the Minnesota Secretary of State as an active Minnesota Non-Profit Corporation seeking CARES Act funds in direct collaboration and coordination with Blue Earth County for programs, activities or expenditures deemed by Blue Earth County as necessary and prudent in advance of the objectives stated in criteria 1.

3)    Have employees, contractors or volunteers actively engaged in provision of programs and/or services in Blue Earth County or to Blue Earth County residents.

4)    Be current on all taxes, bills, or charges due to the County as of July 15, 2020. (if applicable)

Ineligible Organizations include the following (this is a non-exclusive list):

        •    For-profit organizations.

        •    Private foundations or political organizations.

        •    IRS Tax Code 501 organizations other than 501(c).

        •    501(c) churches, religious, political, social, business, charitable or fraternal organizations that do not provide community resources to the public as a whole or who do not/will not provide such identified services in direct collaboration and coordination with Blue Earth County for programs, activities or expenditures deemed by Blue Earth County as necessary and prudent in advance of the objectives stated in criteria 1.

Amount of Grant and Use of Grant Funds

Eligible Organizations may receive a one-time grant of up to $75,000 based on demonstrated need and for use on eligible expenses for the time-period of March 1, 2020 through July 31, 2020.  

Funds may be used for rent or mortgage payments, payroll for current employees, working capital and operational costs for the community resource(s) provided by the Organization. Funds may also be used for the costs of reopening (PPE, plexiglass barriers, signage, supplies, inventory, etc.).

Funds may not be used for purchasing machinery or vehicles, moving expenses, land acquisition, or the payment of property taxes.

The County will determine, in its discretion, the appropriate amount of a grant and the eligible costs and expenses for each eligible community resource Organization.  The County may consider grant requests above $75,000, based solely on its own discretion/determination and upon demonstration of extraordinary circumstances and need.

Funding will be awarded by the Blue Earth County Board at their regularly scheduled Board meetings as applications are determined eligible.

Application Process

Applications will be accepted beginning October 14th, 2020 through October 31st, 2020.

Applications can be submitted by:

  • Email: josh.milow@blueearthcountymn.gov
  • Drop Box: Located at Blue Earth county Historic Courthouse, 204 South 5th Street, Mankato, MN 56001;(4th Street Side of the Building) or;
  • Mailed: Blue Earth County Historic Courthouse, Attn: Josh Milow, Deputy County Administrator, PO Box 8608, Mankato MN 56002

Applicants should include the following information:

  • Basic details about the Organization, including eligibility criteria, types of community resources provided and clients served,            and economic or community impact of the Organization’s operation.
  • Narrative descriptions and estimated calculations of the negative impacts on the Organization due to COVID-19. Negative   impacts may be one or more of the following:
  • The applicant was restricted from operating above 50% by Executive Orders issued by the State of Minnesota in March 2020;
  • The applicant can demonstrate at least a 10% decline in revenue between the comparative periods of March 1, 2019 through July 31, 2019 and March 1, 2020 through July 31, 2020;
  • The applicant can demonstrate at least a net 10% increase in program or service demand and/or expenditures due to COVID-19 above any increase in revenues during the same 2019 to 2020 period (March-July)
  • Description of the community or social impacts of the Organization not being able to provide current or additional services;
  • If applicable, description of the direct collaboration and coordination undertaken or to be undertaken with Blue Earth County for programs, activities or expenditures deemed by Blue Earth County as necessary and prudent in advance of the objectives stated in criteria 1; and
  • Information on the intended use of the grant funds.

Applicants will be notified within approximately two weeks if the application is approved.

Applicants must submit the following: 

  • Demonstration of current federal/state entity or Non-Profit status/licensure.
  • Evidence of the impact of COVID-19 on the Organization’s ability to provide community resources or a demonstrated need for funding to provide additional and necessary community resources in response to COVID-19.
  • Any additional documentation or information deemed necessary by County Administration to determine eligibility, generate grant documents, disburse grant proceeds, or meet program reporting requirements.

The failure to submit required documentation will result in forfeiture of grant award.

Reporting

Organizations receiving grant funds must sign an agreement form acknowledging that the Organization will use the grant funds only for eligible costs and expenses not already covered by other Federal, State, Local or other available funds/programs and agreeing to provide a report to the County on the use of the grant funds.  The County may require Organizations to provide proof that grant funds were used only for eligible costs and expenses.