Council ratifies agreement to accept county COVID funds

FEMA funds only cover 75% of pandemic costs. Finance director says county money essentially makes city whole

his public domain illustration, created at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, reveals ultrastructural morphology exhibited by coronaviruses. Note the spikes that adorn the outer surface of the virus, which impart the look of a corona surrounding the virion, when viewed electron microscopically. In this view, the protein particles E, S and M, also located on the outer surface of the particle, have all been labeled as well. A novel coronavirus, named Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), was identified as the cause of an outbreak of respiratory illness first detected in Wuhan, China, in 2019. The illness caused by this virus has been named coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Artwork by Alissa Eckert, MS; Dan Higgins, MAM

The council on Monday, June 22, ratified an agreement between Seal Beach and Orange County to reimburse the city $204,020 for COVID-19 emergency-related expenses that won’t be covered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The money reimburses the city for expenses that were not covered by funds from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

City Manager Jill Ingram had already approved the agreement, but the council had to ratify her decision.

“Due to the need to quickly execute the Sub-Recipient Agreement, City Manager [Jill] Ingram signed the Agreement on June 18, 2020 under her authority as a result of the related COVID-19 local emergency declaration,” according to the staff report by Finance Director/Treasurer Kelly A. Telford.

FEMA reimbursements only cover 75% of a local agency’s pandemic-related expenses. During her presentation to the meeting, Telford said the funds from the county provide the city with the other 25%, “Which would essentially make the city whole.”

In her staff report, Telford wrote, “If approved, this will provide funding for the portion of the City’s costs that will not be reimbursed by FEMA. FEMA will only reimburse 75% of eligible costs related to the COVID-19 emergency. Collectively, the CARES Act funding from the County of Orange and the FEMA reimbursement are anticipated to cover all reimbursable costs for the City related to the COVID-19 emergency.”

In a June 22 letter to the City Council, Chamber President DeLeon asked for a two-month extension for Merchant Parking Passes, based on the length of time local businesses had to shut down.

“Our restaurants asked us for clarification on the permits as they are overwhelmed with the expenses of reopening,” DeLeon wrote in an email to the Sun.