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The Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO) has Federal Fiscal Recovery Funds for Shelters (FRF-Shelter) available to support rapid responses to outbreaks in overnight or day shelters, drop-in centers, and street outreach programs for people experiencing homelessness or domestic violence. OEO is working closely with the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) to allocate available funding for targeted, immediate outbreak response activities to support an effective response and reduce the health impacts for shelter guests and staff.
Surveys for funding will be accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis, and eligible entities can apply for prospective funding for 30 days at a time. Programs can apply for retroactive expenses back to December 21, 2021, without needing to demonstrate that they met the criteria for an active outbreak during that time. If you wish to apply for retroactive expenses back to September 15, 2021 (the earliest possible date), you will need to demonstrate that there was an active outbreak (3 or more cases) during the period for which you are requesting reimbursement. Please note: Requests for expenses incurred between 9/15/21 and 2/28/22 must be submitted no later than April 15th, 2022, to be eligible for funding.
Do you have a question about eligibility or what the funding can be used for? Check out the Frequently Asked Questions and Answers (updated March 18, 2022) and Eligibility over Time to learn more. The FAQs reference the HUD Housing Inventory Chart (HIC) which can be found here.
Currently funding is available to situations that meet these qualifications. If you meet these thresholds, you are eligible to apply for this funding.
Congregate Emergency Shelter: To qualify as a Congregate Emergency Shelter, the facility must:
- Have homelessness as a criteria for entry
- Have shared bedrooms/sleeping areas, bathrooms or dining areas, and
- be listed in the most recent HUD Housing Inventory Chart (HIC) as an Emergency Shelter or Transitional Housing; or
- receive funding designated for emergency shelter from a public source (such as Minnesota Office of Justice Programs, local government, federal Health and Human Services, etc.); or
- be licensed as an emergency shelter.
Day Shelter or Drop-In Center: To qualify as a day shelter or drop-in center, the facility must:
- Have as its primary purpose providing temporary shelter for people experiencing homeless, and
- Allow persons experiencing homelessness to stay in the facility for as many hours as it is open
Street Outreach Programs Serving Encampments: To be eligible, street outreach programs must:
- Target groups of unsheltered individuals where there is additional risk of Covid transmission.
Community Isolation Space [Added 3/18/22]: To qualify as a Community Isolation Space, an eligible applicant must:
- Identify the geographic area they will be serving (at least one county or region).
- Assure that funding will only be used to provide isolation space for COVID-positive people and may not be used to maintain current shelter operations or expand shelter capacity in response to a general need for increased shelter.
- Accept referrals of persons needing COVID isolation from one or more congregate shelters in that area.
- Contact your local public health and/or emergency management officials to discuss your isolation space model, referral process and community isolation space needs and obtain a letter of support.
- Contact the Minnesota Dept. of Health Congregate Settings team (Health.R-Congregate@state.mn.us) to discuss your COVID mitigation protocols.
As of March 1, 2022, expenses incurred for community isolation and quarantine space may only be reimbursed if the above criteria have been met prior to incurring the isolation space costs.
The survey does not allow you to save your responses. You can view a full list of the survey questions here to prepare your responses. To help you walk through the survey logic, you can also view a flowchart of the survey.
If you have an active COVID-19 outbreak at your congregate setting, please reach out to the MDH congregate health team at Health.R-Congregate@state.mn.us, for support managing the response.
If you have any additional questions on this funding source please reach out to Demetri.Vincze@state.mn.us.
Overview of Eligible Uses
To manage the immediate outbreak response, it is anticipated that funds will be used to support:
- Wages for staff who must isolation or quarantine due to COVID exposure, so staff do not need to use personal paid time off to cover isolation/quarantine period or go without pay.
- Hiring temporary emergency staff to fill shifts in an emergency when staff are isolating or quarantining due to COVID.
- Hazard pay for staff who are directly working in the shelter setting or isolation and/or quarantine space. Applicants must provide a detailed budget narrative including number of staff, hourly increase/amount, and comply with the current Treasury Dept. Interim Regulations for Fiscal Recovery Funds (FRF), which include important limitations on hazard pay (referred to as “premium pay” in the regulations).
- Operating costs for quarantine and/or isolation space, including standing isolation/quarantine space available to persons experiencing homelessness in the community (who cannot stay in shelter due to a required isolation or quarantine period). The funding can support the staffing, food, and operating costs of the quarantine and/or isolation space.
- This funding is not intended to maintain or expand current shelter operations, but rather to safely respond to active outbreaks. In some cases, funds could be used to provide preventive spaces (such as hotels) during a large outbreak when the need for such a space is determined in consultation with MDH.
- Other needs as defined by the setting that could help manage a provider’s response to COVID. This could include transportation to testing or medical appointments and the purchasing of testing kits. These are flexible funds, and the review committee is open to other uses that will protect shelter guests and staff during an active outbreak.