Johnson County allocates second round of COVID-19 funding for workforce development, small businesses and community programs
On Thursday, Feb. 2, the Johnson County Board of County Commissioners approved the allocation of Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds received from the United States Department of the Treasury for several community investment programs.
This is the second round of proposals from the spending plan. The county first allocated funding for community investment programs last October. Two remaining items will be presented in the coming months. SLFRF dollars must be spent by Dec 31, 2024.
The board allocated $200,000 to fund direct community investment programs to address keeping our families and communities safe.
- Gateway of Hope - $100,000. This program will provide financial support to subsidize the costs of mental and behavioral healthcare services for female Johnson County residents who are under-or uninsured and earn a low or moderate income, who therefore have limited or no access to these critical services. Gateway of Hope will use the grant funds to provide 800 counseling sessions, at $125 per session, or 67 sessions per month.
- Pharmacy of Grace - $100,000. This program will provide financial support to enhance the charitable pharmacy services for uninsured patients within Johnson County. Pharmacy of Grace will use the funds to provide 20-25 hours of pharmacy services, including prescriptions, and one-on-one counseling with a licensed pharmacist.
The board also allocated $3,500,010 to fund direct community investment programs to increase workforce development capacity in Johnson County.
- Johnson County Community College: Workforce Development Grants - $1,166,670
- KU Edwards Campus: Workforce Development Grants - $1,166,670
- Workforce Partnership: Workforce Development Grants - $1,166,670
These programs will help increase capacity in Johnson County’s workforce. The programs will serve three primary initiatives: workforce development, business education, and learning opportunities for special populations. These funds will go towards upskilling or re-skilling Johnson County citizens. There will be a targeted focus on conducting outreach to youth aging out of the foster care system, individuals with intellectual disabilities, and justice-involved individuals. Anticipated number of citizens served is approximately 1,800.
Included in the KU Edwards Program is funding for a molecular diagnostics lab to build a workforce trained in diagnosing emergent infectious diseases. The cost of the lab will be $530,000. It will allow KU Edwards to expand their programs in biotechnology, applied biologics, and health science.
Lastly, the BOCC allocated $2,073,520 for the purpose of funding direct community investment programs to address struggling creative small businesses within Johnson County, and the allocation of $50,000 from General Fund Reserves (Countywide Support Fund) for a one-time direct payment to the Arts Council of Johnson County for assistance in administering these programs.
- InterUrban Art House, Inc. - $43,000. The purpose of this program is to provide artists and creative industries professionals operating small businesses with professional development training. Anticipated number of individuals served is approximately 100.
- Arts Council of Johnson County - $884,900 and $50,000. The purpose of this program is to provide financial assistance to creative small businesses and arts nonprofit organizations still recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic. Direct grants of $7,500-$10,000 will be awarded through an application process. Anticipated number of citizens served is approximately 100.
- Emporia State University (through ACJC) - $721,890. The purpose of this program is to provide funding for art therapy programs. Anticipated number of citizens served is approximately 200.
- Johnson County Arts & Heritage Center Maker Space Project - $172,000. The purpose of this program is to provide funding for the renovation of the Maker Space room at the Johnson County Arts & Heritage Center. For the six-month period of 2023 that the space is open, it is anticipated that 300 individuals will take a class or camp session. Community use of the space for meetings, retreats and other gatherings will approximate 350.
- Johnson County Park & Recreation District - $251,730. The purpose of this program is to provide funding to the Culture Division of JCPRD. The approximate reach based on the history of similar events and projects is projected at 275,000.
Various performance measures will be monitored to measure success of these programs.
Find more information about the allocation.