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Reno council approves phase 2 of coronavirus relief spending plan

By Carla O'Day

The Reno City Council on Wednesday allocated the second phase of its coronavirus relief funds to a variety of causes that include aiding the homeless and extending eviction protections.

Additional dollars will go toward park enhancements to conduct business in socially-distant manners and to assist families with schoolchildren struggling to meet the technological demands related to distance learning.

Council members approved the city’s first phase of $23.3 million on July 29, which included funds for business recovery, extending housing eviction protections, food resources, mental health services, and contact tracing.

The second phase spending plan of equal amount was based on council input and community need.

Dylan Shaver, chief of staff to the city manager, said the state eviction moratorium is set to expire on Oct. 15 and suggested the council set aside the portion for eviction relief until at least then.

“We need a little more data. We still don’t know what the (Nevada) Supreme Court’s rules will be around eviction intervention,” Shaver said. “Basically, what we are asking for here is to set aside $2 million and to come back to council at the end of October for an allocation based upon where needs might be. If those needs don’t exist, if we manage to address it all in phase one, we could come back with a recommendation to reallocate to some other use.”

In June, Gov. Steve Sisolak announced Reno was eligible to receive $46.6 million in coronavirus relief funds that came into the state as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act.

Municipalities eligible for these distributions are required to submit two spending plans, each representative of one-half their total allocation, to the governor’s finance office. Funds cannot be used to fill shortfalls in government revenue to cover expenditures that would not otherwise qualify.

Unless extended by congressional action, funds must be spent on eligible expenditures by Dec. 30 and unspent funds must be returned to the state by March 1, 2021.

Read more news about COVID-19 in Reno


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