Nonprofits Eligible for FEMA Assistance in Wake of COVID

Private nonprofits (PNPs) that have sustained extensive disaster losses as a result of COVID-19 may be eligible to apply for Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) assistance.

Applying for the disaster funding requires a significant amount of time and effort. Before reaching out to your county emergency management office, review these guidelines and four-pronged test to determine your organization’s eligibility first.

To determine eligibility, FEMA will be looking to determine if your organization meets the requirements of all four eligibility areas: applicant, facility, work and cost.

1. Applicant Eligibility

To receive FEMA assistance, PNPs need to fall into one of two categories: (1) critical (provides critical services) and (2) essential/non-critical (provides non-critical but essential services).

Examples of Critical PNPs include:

  • Nursing homes
  • Laboratories
  • Rehab centers that provide medical care
  • Hospitals and emergency care facilities
  • Fire/rescue emergency services
  • Educational Facilities (public or private) including colleges

Examples of Essential/Non-Critical PNPs include:

  • Community centers
  • Childcare facilities
  • Food assistance programs
  • Performing arts facilities
  • Senior citizen centers
  • Homeless Shelters
  • Houses of worship

2. Eligible Facilities

Any publicly or PNP-owned building, works, system or equipment is eligible for FEMA relief for damages caused by the emergency event if the facility is: (1) the legal responsibility of the eligible applicant; (2) located in a declared county; and (3) in active use at the time of the emergency.

3. Eligible Work

To be covered by FEMA, work must be: (1) required as a direct result of a declared emergency; (2) the legal responsibility of an eligible applicant performing the work; (3) located in a declared county; and (4) completed within regulatory time limits.

Organizations that fall into the essential/non-critical category are only covered for emergency work that is considered “Emergency Protective Measures,” which include: virus testing, medical supplies and equipment, shelters or emergency care, provisions of essential needs like food/water/ice, EOC operations and security for temporary facilities.

The deadline for Emergency Protective Measures to be performed as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak is September 19, 2020 (6 months after the emergency was declared). New York State can grant a six-month extension by request.

4. Eligible Costs

Qualified expenses for FEMA relief include labor, equipment/materials, contracts and management costs. To be eligible, the costs must be:

  • Reasonable and necessary to complete the work
  • Compliant with Federal, State and Local procurement requirements
  • Reduced by any applicable credits such as insurance and other funding sources

Application Process

If you believe your organization meets the requirements of all four eligibility criteria, you must be prepared to submit the following information to be considered as an applicant:

  • DUNS Number
  • Organizational Charter/By-Laws
  • Tax Exempt Letter, 501(c), (d), or (e) IRS designation
  • State Comptroller’s W-9 Form
  • Articles of Incorporation
  • PNP Questionnaire
  • Copy of the deed or lease agreement

Review the full FEMA PNP Guidelines for more information on eligibility and application requirements, and contact your Grassi Nonprofit Advisor to guide you through the process.

Other Emergency Funding

Whether or not your organization is eligible for FEMA assistance, you should also consider all other avenues of relief through the U.S. Small Business Administration, local foundations and other federal and state sources. Contact our Crisis Response & Recovery hotline at 212.223.6216 or to be connected with one of our Nonprofit Emergency Loan Consultants.

David M. Rottkamp David M. Rottkamp, CPA, is an Audit Partner and Nonprofit Practice Leader, at Grassi. David has over 36 years of experience providing audit and advisory services to the not-for-profit and health care industries. David focuses on organizations serving individuals with special needs, religious organizations, educational institutions, membership associations, social service providers, healthcare providers, foundations, and the arts and culture world. David’s technical knowledge allows... Read full bio

Joseph Tomaino Joseph Tomaino is the Chief Executive Officer of Grassi Healthcare Advisors, LLC and has nearly 40 years of healthcare management experience working in the not-for-profit, for-profit and government-sponsored segments. As a chief executive officer, chief nursing officer, consultant, and educator, Joseph has worked with provider organizations and payers across the U.S. as an architect of value based care -- improving clinical effectiveness along with... Read full bio