WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Three Kansas food banks will get a boost from the State of Kansas as a result of more than $5.7 million in expedited funding provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
On May 20, FEMA obligated the money to the Kansas Adjutant General’s Department, Division of Emergency Management (KDEM) to cover the purchase and delivery of food to vulnerable populations throughout Kansas. The three food banks that will receive assistance are the Kansas Food Bank, Second Harvest, and Harvesters food bank.
“We know that many families are struggling right now with essentials such as food because of the impacts brought about by COVID-19,” said Paul Taylor, FEMA Region 7 administrator. “We are glad to be able to expedite money to Kansas to help support these important feeding efforts.”
To be eligible for the federal funding, the purchase and distribution of the food must alleviate and prevent immediate threats to public health and safety because of the coronavirus pandemic and cannot be used to support everyday operations. The money was authorized as a result of a major disaster declaration for the state of Kansas on March 29 to support the state’s COVID-19 response.
FEMA will reimburse 75% of those eligible costs under its Public Assistance Grant Program (PA), which reimburses certain disaster-related costs incurred by local and state governments, tribal nations and certain non-profit organizations. The remaining 25% is paid by the grant recipient which, in this case, is KDEM.
KDEM is currently working with governmental entities and certain nonprofit organizations in Kansas to develop and fund eligible COVID-19 projects under this disaster declaration.
So far, Kansas has received approximately $40 million in FEMA funding for COVID-19 expenses. The PA program has provided $23 million to help pay for purchases of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), as well as medical supplies and equipment. The state also has received approximately $17 million in Direct Federal Assistance to pay 100% of costs for mobilizing the Kansas National Guard to support the state’s COVID-19 response in various areas.