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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session


Posted: July 14, 2020 03:52 PM
From: Senator Judy Ward
To: All Senate members
Subject: Nonprofit Economic Emergency Delivery System (NEEDS) Grants Program
I plan to introduce legislation establishing the Nonprofit Economic Emergency Delivery System (“NEEDS”) Grants Program to support the Commonwealth's human services systems. This system is comprised of over 8,500 nonprofit organizations statewide that provide critical services for our State's most vulnerable populations while employing a significant percentage of our PA workforce.
Eighty percent of nonprofit revenue comes from government grants or contracts and fees for service. Donors, foundations and government all depend on these organizations to provide basic needs to the most vulnerable Pennsylvanians. If these organizations fail, there would not be a way to provide critical services such as food, shelter, medical treatment, workforce training, etc.
COVID-19 has exacerbated many social issues that were prevalent before the pandemic. The number of families and individuals who are impacted by this crisis rises daily. We must meet that need and create more capacity in this sector, not less. The increased demand for services already seen across the Commonwealth is clear evidence that we need to protect our over 8,500 nonprofit human services providing organizations now or risk forsaking our most vulnerable populations and contributing to further unemployment during one of the most challenging times in our country’s history.
The measure would establish a statewide competitive grant program for eligible community-based human services nonprofit organizations (i.e., childcare centers, domestic violence centers, early intervention service providers, food banks, career training institutions, organizations serving individuals with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities, etc.) that were impacted by the COVID-19 crisis either by closure, increased service delivery or loss of revenue. Under the bill, $200 million in the COVID-19 Response Restricted Account would be transferred to the Commonwealth Financing Authority to provide grants to these nonprofit organizations. Maximum allowable grants shall not exceed $500,000 per eligible non-profit organization.
Please join me in cosponsoring this important initiative which will direct federal CARES Act funding to support human services nonprofit organizations that help meet critical needs in communities across the Commonwealth.    

Introduced as SB1254