On March 22, 2020, the President declared the ongoing Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic of sufficient severity and magnitude to warrant a major declaration for the State of California, pursuant to section 501 (b) of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 5121-5207). In accordance with section 502 of the Stafford Act, eligible emergency protective measures taken to respond to the COVID-19 emergency at the direction or guidance of public health officials’ may be reimbursed under Category B of the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) Public Assistance program. State, Territorial, Tribal, local government entities and certain private non-profit (PNP) organizations are eligible to apply for Public Assistance. The California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) Recovery Section acts as the grantee for FEMAs Public Assistance program and is ready to assist potential applicants with applying for a Public Assistance subgrant and understanding eligibility requirements.
Request for Public Assistance
FEMA has extended the due date for submittal of the Request for Public Assistance (RPA) to 30 days after the incident period for the disaster event closes, however, Cal OES is advising organizations to submit sooner rather than later, so as not to wait until the last minute.
Major Declaration Event Number: FEMA-4482-DR-CA (DR-4482)
Name: California Covid-19 Pandemic
Declared Counties: All 58 of California’s Counties
Incident Period: Incident Period: January 20, 2020 and continuing
The deadline to submit your RPA for the FEMA-4482-DR-CA event is 30-days past the date that the incident period for this event closes; the incident period is currently open, therefore the deadline is undetermined at this time.
COVID-19 Applicants’ Briefings
FEMA-4482-DR-CA is the federal designation for the biological event with the incident period beginning January 20, 2020 and continuing. The briefing linked below is for all counties, cities, special districts, school districts, tribal governments, state agencies, and eligible private non-profit organizations that provided an essential social service in all 58 counties of the state of California. Applicants’ Briefings provide potential applicants with basic information to assist them in their efforts to understand the requirements associated with applying for Public Assistance due to a Fire Management Assistance Grant (FMAG) declaration, under the California Disaster Assistance Act (CDAA) or under a Presidential Emergency Declaration.
These briefings cover topics such as: application processing, eligibility requirements, cost documentation guidance, record keeping, audit requirements, and deadline dates for the COVID-19 Pandemic event. The resources below provide answers to frequently asked questions, including applicant eligibility, eligibility of emergency protective measures, procurement under emergency and exigent circumstances, guidance on how to submit requests for public assistance, and application documents.
Register or Login to FEMA Grants Portal
Applicants must set up an account and submit a Request for Public Assistance (RPA).
YouTube Training Videos for FEMA Grants Portal
View the official FEMA PA Grants Portal Grants Manager Youtube Channel
Applicants' Briefings Schedule
View the complete list of briefings currently scheduled for various emergency declarations.
Public Assistance Forms, Documents, and Reference Materials
All materials mentioned in the Applicants’ Briefings can be found here.
Coronavirus Relief Fund:
As part of the CARES Act, the US Department of the Treasury will make payments from the Coronavirus Relief Fund to States and eligible units of local government, US Territories, and Tribal Governments.
For more information visit the US Department of the Treasury. Please note that this process is being handled entirely by the US Dept. of Treasury, and FEMA is not involved in the process.
Additional information can also be found at the links below:
For any questions regarding your Public Assistance (PA), California Disaster Assistance Act (CDAA), Coronavirus Assistance (COVID-19), or Fire Management Assistance Grant (FMAG) payments, please direct questions or concerns to the Public Assistance Financial Processing Unit at (916) 845-8110 or RecoveryPayments@caloes.ca.gov.
FEMA Public Assistance COVID-19 Policies and Federally Funded Programs
Policies and Equity in COVID-19 Response and Recovery (FEMA PA Webinar)
This webinar via YouTube is for recipients of Public Assistance and provides overviews of:
- The COVID-19 Pandemic Safe Opening and Operation Work Eligible for PA Interim Policy – 4.5.21
- The updated COVID-19 Medical Care Eligible for Public Assistance (version 2) Interim Policy
- Equity requirements for COVID-19 response and recovery, including reporting requirements for vaccination work
Webinar YouTube Link: FEMA Public Assistance Overview: COVID-19 Pandemic Policies & Equitable COVID-19 Response and Recovery
PowerPoint Link: Public Assistance COVID-19 Policy Updates
Medical Care Eligible for Public Assistance Interim Policy - Version 2
FEMA amended the original version of the policy, published on May 9, 2020, to add provisions for COVID-19 vaccination efforts and add requirements to ensure equitable allocation of COVID-19 resources in accordance with the President’s January 21, 2021 Executive Order on Ensuring an Equitable Pandemic Response and Recovery. Except where specifically stated otherwise in this policy, assistance is subject to Public Assistance Program requirements as defined in Version 3.1 of the Public Assistance Program and Policy Guide.
This updated policy supersedes the FEMA COVID-19 Pandemic: Medical Care Costs Eligible for Public Assistance Interim Policy released on May 9, 2020 and is applicable to all COVID-19 declarations.
Policy Link: COVID-19 Medical Care Eligible for Public Assistance (version 2) Interim Policy
Work Eligible for Public Assistance (Interim) FEMA Policy FP 104-009-19
This interim policy defines the framework, policy details, and requirements for determining the eligibility of work and costs under the PA Program to ensure consistent and appropriate implementation across all COVID-19 emergency and major disaster declarations. This interim policy supersedes the FEMA Fact Sheet dated March 19, 2020: Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic: Eligible Emergency Protective Measures, for work performed on or after September 15, 2020.
Policy Link: FEMA PA Eligibility Policy
The Great Plates Delivered (GPD) Program
On April 24, 2020, Governor Gavin Newsom announced the launch of a first-in-the-nation “Great Plates Delivered” program, a meal delivery service for California’s older adults. The purpose is to help seniors and other adults at high risk from COVID-19 to stay home and stay healthy by delivering three nutritious meals a day, and to provide essential economic stimulus to local businesses struggling to stay afloat during the COVID-19 crisis.
Although the program was originally designed as a temporary, emergency relief program to reinforce social distancing measures, minimize hospital surge, and address food insecurity among vulnerable populations amid the height of the pandemic, the Great Plates Delivered program was given a sunset date of July 9, 2021. All local governments who have participated in the statewide program have since transitioned participants to other locally driven food and nutrition resources and services.
Food Access and Resources for Californians Affected by the COVID-19 Pandemic Link: COVID-19 Response to Address Food Insecurity in California
Food Purchase and Distribution (FP+D) for California Food Banks
This policy defines the framework, policy details, and requirements for determining eligible work and costs for the purchase and distribution of food in response to the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency to ensure consistent and appropriate implementation across all COVID-19 emergency and major disaster declarations.
Non-Congregate Sheltering (NCS) Programs in Response to COVID-19
FEMA may reimburse costs related to emergency, non-congregate sheltering (Emergency NCS), subject to the conditions and limitations set forth below. The Emergency NCS will be implemented by the State of California (State) pursuant to (1) the Governor’s Executive Order No. N-25-20 ordering all residents to obey any orders and guidance issued by state and local public health officials, including but not limited to the imposition of social distancing measures, to control the spread of COVID-19, (2) the Governor’s Executive Order N-33-20 (a) incorporating the Order of the State Public Health Officer issued on March 19, 2020, that requires all individuals living in the State of California to stay at home or at their place of residence except as needed to maintain continuity of operations of the federal critical infrastructure sectors, and (b) directing the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services to take necessary steps to ensure compliance with the Executive Order, and (3) guidance issued by the California Department of Public Health that includes the need to practice social distancing.
Template Request Letter Noncongregate Sheltering to FEMA RA
Community Development Block Grant Eligible Activities
Quick Guide to CDBG Eligible Activities to Support Coronavirus and Other Infectious Disease Response
Grantees should coordinate with local health authorities before undertaking any activity to support state or local pandemic response. Grantees may use Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds for a range of eligible activities that prevent and respond to the spread of infectious diseases such as the coronavirus. This document includes examples of eligible activities to support coronavirus and other infectious disease response.
US Department of Agriculture (USDA) Federal Rural Resource Guide for COVID-19
USDA COVID-19 Federal Rural Resource Guide
USDA and its Federal partners have programs that can be used to provide immediate and long-term assistance to rural communities affected by the COVID-19 outbreak. These programs can support recovery efforts for rural residents, businesses and communities through:
- technical, training, and management assistance;
- financial assistance; and
- state and local assistance.
This resource matrix organizes funding opportunities identified in the CARES Act and other federal resources that can help support rural America. Opportunities are categorized by customer and assistance type.
For more information on the immediate actions USDA is taking to respond to COVID-19, visit usda.gov/coronavirus.
For questions and other Public Assistance related inquiries, please send an email to DisasterRecovery@CalOES.ca.gov or call (916) 845-8200.
For questions and other FEMA PA Grants Portal related inquiries, please send an email to FEMA-Recovery-PA-Grants@fema.dhs.gov or call 1(866) 337-8448.