CAIRO — Grady County is due to receive more than $700,000 in federal aid to pay for expenses related to the county’s efforts to combat the COVID-19 pandemic.

Commissioners voted last week to approve the terms and conditions of the federal Coronavirus Relief Fund (CRF), the newly created emergency fund established by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act. Grady County is due to receive $774,000 from the CRF, with an initial allocation of $232,000 to be available immediately after approval of the terms and conditions.

“The bottom line is we have to spend that money toward the things that are specified (in the CRF Terms and Conditions,” said County Administrator Buddy Johnson. “The good news for the county is that … we will probably easily qualify for everything that we’re able to get from the federal government.”

The remaining 70 percent of funds will be available to the county at a later date.

“It appears that we should be able to easily get every dime that was placed in there for us,” Johnson said.

The City of Cairo is slated to receive nearly $500,000 in CARES Act funds, City Manager Chris Addleton said at Monday’s city council meeting.

Council members voted Monday to approve a resolution authorizing Mayor Howard Thrower to agree with the CRF Terms and Conditions, allowing the city to access an advance amount of $147,000 that was allotted to them. City Manager Chris Addleton said he will have to justify use of the funds, which primarily will be used to pay for public safety salaries, before the remaining $343,000 of CARES Act money can be released to the city.

CRF funds are only to be used to pay for “necessary expenditures” incurred due to the COVID-19 pandemic and to stay on track with annual budgets that may be impacted by the health emergency, according to the terms and conditions. Allocation of funds is based upon U.S. Census figures.

The funds will be distributed through GeorgiaCARES, the grant management system administered by the Governor’s Office of Planning and Budget.

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