Ohio Auditor of State Advisory Memo: Use of CARES Act CRF


Auditor of State Advisory Memo

To: All County, City, Township, Village Officials and Independent Public Accountants
From: Keith L. Faber, Auditor of State
Date Issued: October 7, 2020
Subject: Use of Federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act Coronavirus Relief Funds (CRF) to Support Small Businesses and Provide Housing Assistance

As the nation, State of Ohio and local governments continue their efforts to provide assistance and support in responding to the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak, the Auditor of State (AOS) hereby issues this Advisory to all County, City, Village and Township officials, and our IPA community encouraging the appropriate use of Coronavirus Relief Funds (CRF) established by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act – in particular to support local small businesses and provide supportive housing.
d Provide Housing Assistance

Governmental Efforts to Aid Those Impacted by COVID-19 Restrictions

When COVID-19 first appeared, much of the nation shut down non-essential activity to slow the spread and flatten the curve. Thankfully, the federal government reacted with a number of programs and federal funds to help ameliorate the impact of COVID-19 on our economy, including: federal pandemic unemployment assistance, paycheck protection program and other CARES Act funds. While our state has gradually reopened, some health restrictions remain in place which continue to impact our economy, Ohio businesses and many of our citizens. The CRF funds allocated from the Ohio General Assembly will help local governments support programs that further alleviate these lasting impacts on our communities.

Over the past six months, AOS has hosted numerous virtual and in-person round table meetings to discuss the impact of COVID-19 and ways that state and local governments can best provide assistance to Ohio communities. During these meetings we have discussed a number of issues and challenges relative to the purpose, use and administration of federal CRF funds. These meetings have left us impressed by how connected local leaders are to the needs of their communities and the creative use of available resources to meet those needs, but also makes clear that many local governments have questions and concerns about the proper use of CRF funds.

Download the complete version of this bulletin here.