General Funding and Grants Frequently Asked Questions

CDC is receiving funding and grants questions from its recipient community due to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). Below is a list of Frequently Asked Questions that addresses some of the questions from our recipient community. This is a rapidly evolving situation, and we will continue to provide updated guidance and information as it becomes available or as we receive additional questions whose responses are helpful to others.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. When will tribes, tribal organizations, urban Indian health organizations, or health service providers to tribes receive funding provided for in the supplemental appropriation?
    CDC is currently working across the Administration, and gathering input from tribal organizations, to finalize a plan to allocate these funds and maximize public health impact and reach to tribal populations. On Friday, March 6, 2020, the President signed the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2020.pdf iconexternal icon The supplemental contains more than $8 billion, of which $950 million is specifically directed for grants or cooperative agreements to states, localities, territories, tribes, tribal organizations, or health service providers to tribes to carry out surveillance, epidemiology, laboratory capacity, infection control, mitigation, communications, and other preparedness and response activities. Congressional direction also states CDC must allocate no less than $40 million of the funds described above to tribes, tribal organizations, urban Indian health organizations, or health service providers to tribes.
  1. Will you accept late applications?
    When a delay occurs because the applicant or recipient is directly impacted by COVID-19, CDC will consider extending the application due date beyond the date specified in the Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) on a case-by case basis, in accordance with the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Grants Policy Statement “Submitting an Application,” Part I-25-26.  Please submit your request to extend the NOFO deadline to the assigned grants management specialist/program official noted in the Notice of Funding Opportunity under Agency Contacts prior to the NOFO closing date. Your request should include enough detail about the delay so that CDC can determine whether circumstances justify extending the NOFO application submission deadline.
  1. Can I receive relief on the submission of continuation applications?
    Yes, see answer 2 above.
  1. Can I request an extension to submit letters of support?
    If the impact of COVID-19 prevents an applicant from securing required letters of support, please submit your application without that documentation by the established due date, with an explanation of the cause for delay.  Letters of support should be submitted as soon as possible after the deadline.  Please contact your assigned grants management officer/program official for further discussion and guidance.
  1. Can you provide guidance regarding recipients/subrecipients not completing activities due to COVID-19?
    If a recipient, either directly or via its subrecipients, is unable to complete approved activities because of disruptions created by the COVID-19 public health emergency, please contact your assigned grants management officer and program official for further discussion and guidance.
  1. Will local and county governments receive funding?
    As of March 17, 2020, CDC awarded more than $604 million to state and certain local jurisdictions to conduct critical public health activities in their communities during this emergency. County and local governments may contact their state health officer for additional information on the distribution of funding already made available under direct awards to their state.
  1. Are there any flexibilities for grant management activities?
    Yes, on March 19, 2020, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) issued Memorandum M-20-17pdf iconexternal icon that provides administrative, financial management, and audit reporting relief for recipients and applicants of federal financial assistance directly impacted by COVID-19.  This memorandum provides similar administrative relief listed in M-20-11pdf iconexternal icon issued on March 9, 2020, to an expanded scope of recipients affected by the loss of operational capacity and increased costs due to the COVID-19 crisis. These flexibilities are time limited and will be reassessed by OMB within 90 days of the memorandum.
  1. Is there guidance for the temporary reassignment of state, tribal, and local personnel during a declared federal public health emergency?
    Grant recipients may need to temporarily reassign state, tribal, or local personnel during a declared federal public health emergency.  CDC’s webpage provides information about the HHS Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) guidance for the temporary reassignment of state, tribal, and local personnel. The webpage includes links to the ASPR websiteexternal icon, including the ASPR temporary reassignment request formpdf iconexternal icon so that a state governor, tribal leader, or designee can request the reassignment of personnel.
  1. Can recipients redirect funds within their cooperative agreement to COVID-19 activities?
    Redirection of funds may be allowable when the funds that will be redirected for COVID-19 activities are within the scope of the current award and the award’s statutory authority and do not duplicate activities with other CDC funded and federally funded activities.  Please contact your assigned grants management officer and program official for further discussion and guidance.
  1. Can recipients be reimbursed for costs incurred for canceled meetings, travel, conferences?
    On March 19, 2020, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) issued Memorandum M-20-17pdf iconexternal icon that provides administrative, financial management, and audit reporting relief for recipients and applicants of federal financial assistance directly impacted by COVID-19. CDC can allow recipients to charge costs to the award such as the cancellation of events, travel, or the pausing and restarting of grant-funded activities due to the public health emergency. Recipients are required to maintain records and documentation to substantiate the cost.  Please contact your assigned grants management officer and program official for further discussion and guidance. Concurrent with programs, recipients will need to assess the impact on their programmatic activities that were originally funded once normal activities resume as there is no guarantee of additional funding.
  1. Can recipients charge salaries to federal awards when personnel are not able to work due to COVID-19 office closures or similar disruptions?
    On March 19, 2020, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) issued Memorandum M-20-17pdf iconexternal icon that provides administrative, financial management, and audit reporting relief for recipients and applicants of federal financial assistance directly impacted by COVID-19. Recipients may continue to charge salaries and benefits to currently active federal awards consistent with the recipients’ policy of paying salaries (under unexpected or extraordinary circumstances) from all funding sources. Recipients are required to maintain records and documentation to substantiate the cost, including reference to the recipients’ salary policy. Concurrent with programs, recipients will need to assess the impact on their programmatic activities that were originally funded once normal activities resume as there is no guarantee of additional funding.
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Page last reviewed: March 23, 2020