RESOLUTION NO. 924
A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY OF UNIVERSITY PLACE APPROVING AN INTERAGENCY AGREEMENT FOR CORONAVIRUS RELIEF FUND FOR LOCAL GOVERNMENTS AND SETTING FORTH GUIDELINES FOR THE DISTRIBUTION OF CORONAVIRUS RELIEF FUNDS TO THE UNIVERSITY PLACE COMMUNITY
WHEREAS, COVID-19 is a contagious and potentially deadly virus that has been declared a pandemic event by the World Health Organization; and
WHEREAS, on March 16, 2020, the City of University Place declared a state of emergency related to COVID-19; and
WHEREAS, actions taken to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 have resulted in widespread social and economic disruption throughout the City of University Place; and
WHEREAS, the City of University Place will receive, on a reimbursement basis from the State Department of Commerce, the sum of $992,700.00 from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act); and
WHEREAS, the CARES Act and the State guidelines which provide for the distribution of the funds provide that payments may only be used to cover costs that: (1) are necessary expenditures incurred due to the public health emergency with respect to the Coronavirus Disease 2019; (2) were not accounted for in the budget most recently approved as of March 27, 2020 (the date of enactment of the CARES Act) for the State or government; and (3) were incurred during the period that began on March 1, 2020, and ends on October 31, 2020; and
WHEREAS, the U.S. Department of the Treasury has specifically advised that recipients such as the City of University Place may use fund payments to provide emergency financial assistance to businesses directly impacted by the COVID-19 public health emergency. This federal guidance affords local governments, such as the City, the discretion to determine what payments are necessary. It adds that “[a] program that is aimed at assisting small businesses with the costs of business interruption caused by required closures should be tailored to assist those businesses in need of such assistance.” Furthermore, “[t]he amount of a grant to a small business to reimburse the costs of business interruption caused by required closures would also be an eligible expenditure[.]” The federal guidance goes on to add that businesses “affected by decreased customer demand as a result of the COVID-19 public health emergency,” are eligible for grant programs which benefit small businesses; and
WHEREAS, in its most recent legislation addressing its biannual goals and priorities, the University Place City Council in Resolution 864 recognized that its top priority was its focus on businesses within the City. To that end, the City Council set forth the goal to identify, retain and recruit those “[b]usiness[es which] can thrive with University Place’s geographic, social and quality of life assets,” in addition to those “business types that have the optimum ratio between tax revenue and the cost to provide local government services to that business type[;]” and
WHEREAS, the COVID-19 crisis has forced governments and local businesses alike to reexamine their long-term planning. On the local government side, both the State of Washington and a number of local governments are implementing cost-containment measures in the way of service cuts and reductions in force. Already, the State has seen record unemployment and a number of University Place businesses either have closed or are at risk of closing; and
WHEREAS, focusing on businesses, and in particular those businesses which directly support the local economy through the payment of sales tax is necessary to ensure the continuity of governmental services for all residents of the City. By way of illustration, because of the Great Recession of 2007-2009, due to falling revenues, the City cut approximately one-third of its staff which resulted in a reduction of public-facing services, including a reduction in its law enforcement services by approximately one-third. These impacts were felt after the Recession concluded when, in 2017, the City cut its Parks & Recreation Department due to continued sales tax shortfalls; and
WHEREAS, the U.S. Department of the Treasury has specifically advised that recipients such as the City of University Place may use fund payments to provide emergency financial assistance to individuals and families directly impacted by a loss of income due to the COVID-19 public health emergency. Such guidance extends to payments for “program[s] to assist individuals with payment of overdue rent or mortgage payments to avoid eviction or foreclosure or unforeseen financial costs for ... other emergency individual needs.” The City of University Place further determines that such assistance, in the form of a program to assist individuals with payment of overdue rent, utilities and childcare is a necessary expenditure, consistent with the City’s emergency response and appropriate in light of the exigencies of the situation to maintain both housing and employment for its residents; and
WHEREAS, the City recognizes that providing housing assistance accomplishes fundamental governmental purposes in ensuring housing. Moreover, by expending monies in this way, the City is avoiding the necessity of spending increased funds in addressing future homelessness. This action is necessary to support both the poor or infirm as it is limited to those who have suffered financial impacts of COVID-19; and
WHEREAS, the City Council also takes note that food stability in this time has directly impacted the local community. It is therefore appropriate to make a direct appropriation to ensure that the residents of the City of University Place, who need food, have a means of obtaining it; and
WHEREAS, the City Council wishes to appropriate and deploy portions of said funds within the community, emphasizing small business stabilization, housing stabilization and human service needs occasioned as a result of COVID-19. These actions further long-standing City goals and priorities, are consistent with the fundamental purposes of government by addressing the welfare of the residents of the City of University Place, and the use of these funds in the manners set forth herein are necessary, appropriate and proper under both state and federal law;
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF UNIVERSITY PLACE, WASHINGTON, AS FOLLOWS:
Section 1. Approval of Contract with Department of Commerce. The City Council hereby approves execution of the Interagency Agreement between the City of University Place and the Washington State Department of Commerce for the Coronavirus Relief Fund for Local Governments, in substantially the form of the documents on file with the City Clerk. The proper officials of the City of University Place are authorized to execute and implement the Interagency Agreement.
Section 2. Creation of Stabilization Programs.
The City Council establishes the following grant programs to provide community stabilization:
A. The City Council establishes the COVID-19 City Business Relief Funds Program. These funds allocated to this program shall be expended consistent with the criteria described in Exhibit A, attached hereto.
B. The City Council establishes the COVID-19 Human Services Stabilization Program. These funds allocated to this program shall be expended consistent with the criteria described in Exhibit B, attached hereto.
Section 3. Allocation of Coronavirus Relief Funds.
A. Subject to the constraints otherwise set forth in this Resolution, the City Council directs the following sums of those of Coronavirus Relief Funds (i.e. those funds which are to be received or anticipated to be received via the interagency agreement identified in Section 1 of this Resolution), to be allocated to the following programs:
1. Five hundred thousand dollars ($500,000.00) shall be allocated to the COVID-19 City Business Relief Funds Program. Of these funds, four hundred thousand dollars ($400,000.00) shall be initially dedicated to businesses addressing the City’s priority needs (referred to in the program herein described as “Tier 1” businesses).
2. One hundred thousand dollars ($100,000.00) shall be allocated to the COVID-19 Human Services Stabilization Program. Of these amounts,
a. an amount, not exceeding ten thousand dollars ($10,000.00), may be allocated first to nonprofit corporations who have demonstrate a direct impact related to COVID-19 and who provide human services to the University Place Community, with a maximum grant amount of $3,000.00. The criterion generally applicable, excluding compliance with the City’s business licensing requirements, to those Tier 2 business are applicable to an award of funds under this subsection;
b. An additional ten thousand dollars ($10,000) together with any monies which may be unallocated under subsection (a) by August 17, 2020 to nonprofits may be allocated to one or more nonprofit corporations with a demonstrated commitment towards serving the human services needs of University Place residents for the purposes of ensuring food stability and other related human services impacts presented by COVID-19 within the City of University Place during the course of this emergency.
3. The remaining funds, in the amount of three hundred ninety-two thousand, seven hundred dollars ($392,700.00) are subject to allocation for reasonable, proper, authorized and necessary expenses via the City’s purchasing processes or via separate legislation. These expenses may include, but are not limited to: personnel costs, City’s equipment needs, facility improvements, personal protective equipment and other expenditures authorized by the Interagency Agreement or the CARES Act.
B. Any monies which the Council has directed their use for any of the programs identified in Subsection (A) and any subparts thereof, which have not been committed by August 17, 2020 may be reallocated by the City Manager between the programs identified in this Resolution.
Section 4. Administration of Stabilization Programs. The administration of the programs set forth in Section 2 shall be subject to the following parameters and guidelines:
A. The City Manager or his designees are authorized to take and execute any additional measures or documents that may be necessary to administer these programs and the interagency agreement authorized in Section 1 of this Resolution and to make necessary changes to the administration of these funds which are consistent with this Resolution, excepting that changes to maximum grant amounts or maximum funding amounts shall be approved by the University Place City Council.
B. City staff shall develop any application documents to ensure that the process is as simple, streamlined, and easy for the applicant as possible.
C. The City Manager will provide a report to the University Place City Council documenting the grant funding, the amount of the funding, the need and remaining grant fund balance.
D. The City Manager may, but is not required to, execute one or more contracts for services to aid in the administration of these Programs provided that the costs of administration does not exceed the spending authority set forth in Chapter 4.50 of the University Place Municipal Code. The costs of administration associated with any such contracts may be deducted from the funds associated with the Program(s).
E. The City Council makes the express determination that, notwithstanding any provision of the University Place Municipal Code or internal policy to the contrary, that any such contracts necessary to implement Subsection (A)(3) of Section 3 of this Resolution are within the scope of the emergency management authority contained within Section 2.35.080 of the University Place Municipal Code and/or Resolution 917 (“A Resolution Of The City Of University Place, Washington Certifying The Existence Of An Emergency Relative To COVID-19”) and are not subject to competitive bidding or other similar requirements associated with the City’s emergency response.
Section 5. Legislative Findings. To the extent that legislative findings are necessary, the recitals set forth above are hereby adopted as the City Council’s legislative findings in support of the funds, policies, expenditures and other actions undertaken pursuant to this Resolution. The Council reserves the right to supplement its findings at a later time, if in its sole discretion, it deems it necessary to do so.
Section 6. Severability. If any provision of this Resolution or the application thereof to any person or circumstance is held invalid, the invalidity does not affect other provisions or applications of this Resolution which can be given effect without the invalid provision or application, and, to this end, the provisions of this Resolution are severable; unless however, the invalidity pertains to qualifying criterion for one of the subsidiary Programs (i.e., Tier 1/2 businesses or specific human services components) set forth herein, in which case, all qualifying criterion for such subsidiary Program shall be deemed not to have further effect with Council retaining the ability to redraft new criterion in light of the invalidity.
Section 7. Retroactive Ratification of Actions Taken. Any and all actions taken by the City Manager or City staff related to either the Interagency Agreement identified in Section 1 or the Programs outlined herein that occurred prior to the authorization provided in this Resolution are hereby ratified and approved.
Section 8. General Provisions.
A. This Resolution shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of funding.
B. This Resolution is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the City of University Place, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.
Section 9. Effective Date. This Resolution shall take effect immediately upon its adoption.
ADOPTED BY THE CITY COUNCIL ON JULY 6, 2020.
________________________________ Caroline Belleci, Mayor
Emelita J. Genetia, City Clerk
APPROVED AS TO FORM:
Matthew S. Kaser, City Attorney