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This public information page was created to provide background information and updates on the Coronavirus Relief Fund (CRF) Strategic Plan (PDF)

CARES Act and COVID Relief Fund 

The U.S. Federal Government signed into law the $2 trillion Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act aimed at providing relief to individuals, businesses, and government organizations hit hard by the effects of COVID-19.  Established through the CARES Act, the $150 billion Coronavirus Relief Fund (CRF) provides payments to Local, State, and Tribal governments navigating the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak. The City of Phoenix received $293 million from the Coronavirus Relief Fund. The CARES Act provides that payments from the CRF may only be used to cover costs that: 

  • ​​​are expenditures incurred due to the COVID-19 public health emergency; 

  • were not accounted for in the current budget; 

  • were incurred between March 1, 2020, and Dec. 20, 2020.

Per federal guidance, funds may not be used for city revenue replacement. ​ However, per the guidance and FAQs authored by the United States Treasury and the State of Arizona it is clear that we can charge existing public safety payroll costs to the Coronavirus Relief Fund. The guidance states "...for this reason and as a matter of administrative convenience in light of the emergency nature of this program, a State, territorial, or Tribal government may presume that payroll costs for public safety employees are payments for services substantially dedicated to mitigating or responding to the COVID-19 public health emergency...".

​On May 5, 2020, t​he Phoenix City Council approved the strategic plan that allocates $150 million of $293 million in available Federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding received by the city of Phoenix. On July 1, 2020, City Council approved using the $143 million CRF Reserve to offset Public Safety salaries in order to preserve important community programs in other areas.  

Also on this page, you can watch videos from City Council Policy Meetings or find information about Help Available. You can also review Downloads and Resources.

Phoenix’s Strategic Plan

Community Investment Programs  $75 million

Business and Employee Assistance​ - $15,700,000

Provides economic relief and assistance for economic disruption effects on small businesses, airport small businesses, microenterprises​ and artists.

  • Small business assistance with Phoenix IDA ($5,000,000)

  • Small business guidance ($100,000)

  • Restaurant Restart program ($1,000,000)​

  • Airport small business assistance​ ($1,000,000)

  • Microenterprise ($6,000,000)

  • Arts & Culture ($2,600,000)

Utility & Rent/Mortgage Assistance - $30,000,000

Provides residential City utility and rent/mortgage assistance and business City utility bill assistance.

  • Three months of City services, natural gas, and electric utility assistance and three months of rent/mortgage assistance for individuals affected by the COVID-19 economic disruption ($24,000,000)

  • Three months of City water and sewer assistance for businesses affected by the COVID-19 economic disruption ($6,000,000)

Distance Learning and Wi-Fi Access - $3,300,000

Enables public housing facilities to be updated with broader wi-fi access for students to participate in distance learning from schools.

  • Public Housing Wi-Fi ($1,300,000)

  • Wi-Fi and Digital Divide Expansion ($2,000,000)

  • Community access to on-line city services and remote meeting access

Mitigation and Care for Vulnerable Populations - $10,000,000

Provides resources to mitigate the impacts of COVID-19 on the City's most vulnerable populations.​

  • Homelessness and affordable housing strategy

  • Domestic violence impacts of COVID-19 ($1,400,000)

  • Refugee/Asylum seeker assistance ($3,000,000)

  • Landlord/Tenant, heat re​lief and senior assistance due to COVID-19 ($5,600,000)​​

Food Delivery - $5,000,000

Provides food assistance through food delivery systems to serve healthy foods to impacted populations.

  • Seniors, schools and food banks ($5,000,000)

Better Health Outcomes and Community Testing - $5,000,000  

  • ​​​Ensure broad testing, especially in underserved communities ($1,000,000)

  • Purchase up to 1 million face coverings/masks ($500,000)

  • Reserve for PPE needs for schools, health navigators, early detection and other community needs ($3,500,000) ​​

Unallocated - $6,000,000

Reserved for future City Council consideration. 

City Operations Expenses $75 million

Employee COVID-19 Testing - $6,000,000

  • Live virus testing for full and part-time employees

  • Antibody testing for full and part-time employees

PPE purchases/COVID-19 cleaning costs - $20,000,000

  • PPE for employees and customers

  • City facilities

  • Public Transit

  • Extra Street cleanups

  • COVID-19 jail costs or central ​booking facility expenses

Medical and Public Safety Measures for COVID - $5,000,000

  • Emergency Medical Transport

  • Police / Fire response and enforcement of COVID-19 orders or illness

  • Parks & Recreation enforcement of park closures/restrictions

Payroll Expense Reimbursement/Management Oversight for COVID - $19,000,000

  • COVID-19 Leave for employees

  • Police / Fire, Emergency Management

  • Human Services, Parks & Recreation, etc.

  • Management/accounting/equity oversight

Telework/E-government Solutions for COVID - $15,000,000

  • Telework expenses

  • Enhanced E-government capabilities (311 Center, video court, teleconferencing, virtual public meetings, etc.)

  • 911 Telemedicine development

Public Facility Retrofit for COVID - $10,000,000

  • Employee workspace and Public facility retrofit ($6,000,000)​

  • Public Transit retrofit ($4,000,000)

Public Safety Salary Offsets - $143,000,000​​​​​

On July 1, 2020, City Council approved using the $143 million CRF Reserve to offset Public Safety salaries in order to preserve important community programs in other areas.  


Contact Us

• Call us at (602) 262-3111
• Email contactus@phoenix.gov​ ​​​​​

Note when you submit an email it falls under the city's policy which states that the email message is: (1) subject to public disclosure under the Public Records Law, (2) is not private or confidential and (3) is retained for 90 days. ​​