The 2021 Budget Act appropriated $100 million one-time General Fund to provide fiscal relief to independent special districts for revenue losses and or unanticipated costs incurred due to the COVID-19 public health emergency. Funds are reserved for districts that have not received other forms of COVID-19 fiscal relief directly from the state or federal government.
To be eligible to apply for an allocation, special districts must meet the following criteria:
- Must be designated as an independent special district by the State Controller’s Office (SCO); and
- Have not received other forms of COVID-19 fiscal relief directly from the state or federal government.
The receipt of Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) reimbursements or the intent to apply for FEMA reimbursements does not disqualify a special district from applying. However, if a special district intends to apply for the California Arrearage Payment Program or the California Water and Wastewater Arrearage Program, the special district is ineligible to apply for these funds.
Finance, in consultation with the California Special Districts Association (CSDA), developed a methodology to allocate these funds to independent special districts. Each qualifying district that applies will receive an allocation based on its proportionate share of the total unanticipated costs and revenue losses incurred by all districts during the following eligible periods:
- Revenue Losses—Revenue losses, from all fund sources, incurred due to the COVID-19 public health emergency during the 2020-21 state fiscal year, compared to the revenue from all fund sources in the 2018-19 state fiscal year (July 1 through June 30—which serves as the base period to which the revenues will be compared).
- Unanticipated Costs—Unanticipated costs incurred due to the COVID-19 public health emergency during the period starting March 4, 2020 and ending June 15, 2021. This aligns with similar federal fiscal reporting timeframes.
Application Process – Applications due October 29
The state developed a secure web form to facilitate the application process.
To access web form: https://esd.dof.ca.gov/cfrsd/special-district
The web form is optimized for the Google Chrome browser and may not work with other browsers.
Eligible special districts must use the web form to provide the following required information:
- 2018-19 revenue from all fund sources
- 2020-21 revenue from all fund sources
- Unanticipated costs incurred between March 4, 2020 and June 15, 2021
- Costs eligible for FEMA reimbursements incurred between March 4, 2020 and June 15, 2021
- Contact information for an authorized representative, the person submitting the application, and an alternate contact
Applications open on October 1, 2021 and must be submitted by 5:00 PM, October 29, 2021.
Finance will review all applications and calculate the allocations by the first week of November. The allocations will be shared with the SCO, who will then disburse the funds to the county auditor-controllers by the second week of December. Each county auditor controller must allocate the funds to the independent special districts in their county, within 30 days of receipt of funding from the SCO.
|Submit final allocations to SCO||Wednesday, December 8, 2021|
|Submit final allocations to county auditor-controllers||Thursday, December 9, 2021|
|SCO disburses payments to county auditor-controllers||Wednesday, December 15, 2021|
|County auditor-controllers disburse payments within 30 days of receipt of funding||Friday, January 14, 2022|
- COVID-19 Fiscal Relief for Special Districts Webinar – Presented by CSDA and Finance:
- Webinar Recording: When you arrive at the registration page, you will be prompted to add the On-Demand Webinar to your cart. If you are not a member of California Special Districts Association (CSDA), please click “Register HERE” (in the description) and you will be prompted to fill out a brief online form providing your name, job title, email address, and district name. When finished, you will receive a confirmation email within one business day with instructions for how to access the webinar. Any questions? Call CSDA at (877) 924-2732.
- PDF of Presentation Slides
- Frequently Asked Questions
- SCO List of Independent Special Districts: You can search for your district on the State Controller’s Office database, and it will provide a descriptor in the search results as to your special district designation.
- FEMA Reimbursement Guidelines: https://www.fema.gov/fact-sheet/eligible-emergency-protective-measures
- State Water and Utility Arrearages Programs:
- Water and Wastewater Arrearages:
- Utility Arrearages:
- Water and Wastewater Arrearages:
For general questions, please email COVIDfund@csda.net.
For web portal or disbursement questions, please email SDrelief@dof.ca.gov.