McKeesport – May 5, 2020 – More than $17 million in federal funds earmarked for the purchase of personal protection equipment (PPE), supplies and training in response to the COVID-19 pandemic will soon be available through the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency (PCCD), state Sen. Jim Brewster (D-Allegheny/Westmoreland) said today.

“There is a significant amount of federal funding available to help with the purchase of PPE, cleaning supplies and pay for critical needs,” Brewster said.  “These funds should be released as soon as possible so they can be put to good use in protecting our first-responders and frontline workers.”

In responding to COVID-19 health threat, Brewster said the recently passed federal CARES Act includes $17.6 million for the state to distribute through PCCD and another $8.4 million for local governments.

He said the funds can be used to purchase PPE, cleaning supplies, training, travel and addressing medical needs of inmates.

“Our first-responders and frontline workers have put their lives on the line to protect our citizens,” Brewster said.  “We should quickly draw down available federal money to help them through this very challenging time.”

In addition to federal funds available to the state, more than $8 million has been set aside for local governments.  Allegheny County ($48,000) and McKeesport ($119,006) are among the nearly 40 counties and local government units eligible for local grants.

The local governments were deemed eligible under the local Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant Program, Brewster said.