Tribal Government COVID-19 Emergency Response Grants

COVID response worker distributing supplies

Tribal governments are taking extraordinary measures to protect their communities during the COVID-19 pandemic while providing the basic services communities rely on. Commerce is moving these critical dollars so Tribal governments can respond to COVID-19 and its impacts.

Commerce manages the following grants to the 29 federally recognized Tribes in the state to bolster their response to the COVID-19 pandemic:

  • $10 million state Disaster Relief Funds:  COVID-19 Emergency Response Grant for Tribal Governments
  • $20 million federal CARES Act funding: Coronavirus Relief Funds (CRF) for Tribal Governments

Both grants provide funding to respond to the COVID-19 outbreak and the impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak.  

Allocations for both grants were made based using a method developed by Tribal Leaders, based on Tribal employees and enrolled member data.

Invoicing tips for the COVID-19 Emergency Response Grants for Tribal Governments (PDF)
COVID-19 Emergency Response Grants Eligible Expenses and Examples (PDF)

State COVID-19 Emergency Response Grant For Tribal Government Information and Resources

Under state Disaster Relief Funds, the COVID-19 emergency response grant may be used to reimburse Tribal governments in response to the COVID-19 public health emergency during the period of April 1, 2020, thru June 30, 2021.

Program Resources for State COVID-19 Emergency Response Tribal Grant

Federal Coronavirus Relief Funds (CRF) For Tribal Governments Information and Resources

Under the CARES Act, the Coronavirus Relief Funds (CRF) may be used to reimburse Tribal governments in response to the COVID-19 public health emergency from March 1, 2020, through June 30, 2021.

These may include expenditures incurred to allow the Tribal government to respond directly to the emergency, such as by addressing medical or public health needs, as well as expenditures in response to second-order effects of the emergency, such as economic support to those suffering from employment or business interruptions due to COVID-19-related business closures.

Funds may NOT be used to fill shortfalls in government revenue to cover expenditures that would not otherwise qualify under the statute. Although a broad range of uses is allowed, revenue replacement is not a permissible use of CRF payments.

Payments may NOT be used to cover costs accounted for in the budget most recently approved as of March 27, 2020. The “most recently approved” budget refers to the enacted budget for the particular government’s relevant fiscal period. A cost is not considered to have been accounted for in a budget merely because it could be met using a budgetary stabilization fund, rainy day fund, or similar reserve account.

Grantees are charged with determining whether an expense is eligible based on the US Treasury’s guidance and the grantee’s contract scope of work with Commerce.

To assist Tribal governments with this determination, Commerce has developed an eligibility cost test linked below. This test gives each Tribal government full authority to make the appropriate call for each circumstance.

Program Resources For Federal Coronavirus Relief Funds
US Treasury’s Guidance 
USTreasury’s CRF FAQs (Updated Often) 
US Treasury’s CARES Act CRF Landing Page


Program Contacts

Emily Burgess
Program Coordinator and Grant Manager

Andrea Avila
Grant Manager

Ernie Rasmussen
Tribal Liaison