CSBG IM 2020-158 Cares Act Supplemental Administrative Guidance

Publication Date: May 8, 2020

IM#: CSBG-IM-2020-158

DATE: May 8, 2020

TO: The CSBG Network

SUBJECT: CSBG CARES Act Supplemental Administrative Guidance

ATTACHMENT(S): CSBG CARES Act Supplemental - Projected Allocations Chart

PURPOSE: This guidance provides preliminary information on the Community Services Block Grant (CSBG) Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act Supplemental Award process. More detailed information and plan amendment instructions will be forthcoming in an Action Transmittal.

RELATED REFERENCES: Community Services Block Grant Act, 42 U.S.C. 9901 et seq.; Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, 2020, Public Law 116-36; and Department of Health and Human Services Block Grant Regulations, 45 CFR Part 96.


The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, 2020, Public Law 116-36, was signed into law on March 27, 2020, providing $1 billion in additional funds to the CSBG program. The funds to states, territories, and tribes authorized under the CSBG Act are intended to address the consequences of increasing unemployment and economic disruption as a result of COVID-19.


OCS is currently preparing to release supplemental CARES Act awards. All states, territories and tribes will receive CARES Act funding, as a separate allotment, under the same formula used for grants allocations under the regular annual CSBG appropriations. States, territories, tribes, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia that applied for, and received, funding in FY2020 will receive a portion of the CSBG CARES Act funds.

With the exception of a withholding related to minimum allotments described below, OCS will distribute all available funds to eligible states, territories, and tribes for drawdown based on actual expenditures. The CFDA number for these funds is 93.569


Because CARES Act funding is a supplemental appropriation, states[1], territories, and tribes will receive funds for immediate distribution to eligible entities based on the proportionate share, and subject to the signed assurances and certifications, included in the FFY 2020 State CSBG Plan or Tribal CSBG Plan.

By September 1, 2020, states and tribes will be required to submit a CSBG plan amendment with information specific to CARES Act funding. This information will be submitted online via the ACF Online Data Collection (OLDC) system. States and tribes will receive additional instruction via Action Transmittals. The format for the submission will be similar to the format for the regular CSBG State Plan and CSBG Tribal Plan, but the amount of information required to be submitted will be substantially reduced.

For states, the CARES Act CSBG Amendment will include the amounts allocated to each eligible entity, income eligibility levels, a plan for state training and technical assistance and discretionary uses of CSBG, and a detailed monitoring plan. To assure that critically needed resources are available to meet community needs, states are asked to begin immediate distribution of resources to eligible entities.


The standard formula for distribution under Sections 675A and Section 675B of the CSBG Act (42 U.S.C. 9905 & 9906) will apply to the CSBG COVID-19 Supplemental. Attached please find the projected CARES Act Funding for all states, tribes, territories, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia. This information is provided for preliminary planning purposes. Final amounts, including allocations for tribes will be provided in subsequent guidance.

Note Regarding States with Minimum Allotments: Section 675B(b)(1) of the CSBG Act addresses allocation amounts for states that are subject to minimum allotments. This provision requires that states must receive at least 1⁄2 of 1 percent of the amount available for distribution to states if the appropriation exceeds $345 million in a given year.

Section 675B(b)(3) further limits that the “maximum allotment” for these states can be no more than 140% of the aggregate amount allotted to a state for the preceding fiscal year. As a result, minimum allocations are currently limited to approximately $1.37 million per state (including funds that will be allocated to tribes within the state).

As the maximum allotment provision was not addressed by the CARES Act, OCS is temporarily withholding $43.5 million from the release to confirm Congressional intent on the allocation.

Thank you for your attention. OCS looks forward to continuing to provide high quality services to OCS grantees.

Clarence H. Carter
Acting Director
Office of Community Services


J. Janelle George
Acting Deputy Director
Office of Community Services

[1] For the purposes of this guidance, references to “states” include the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico, which are all subject to the same instructions and requirements under the CSBG Act. The U.S. Territories of the American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands are also included in the instructions for states, but these territories may also consolidate grants under a special legislative authority. Additional instructions related to plan and report submission requirements specific to states, tribes, and territories will be included in future Action Transmittals to be issued separately.

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