[LFC Comments: A thank you is in order to Mr. Chris Galloway, Lake County Auditor, for his timeliness and transparency in responding to our records request regarding the distribution of the money received from the State of Ohio in response to the CoVid-19 pandemic.]
Attached you will find the resolutions submitted to my office by each local jurisdiction, making them eligible for receipt of CARES Act funding. Under HB 481, the county auditor distributes disbursements to each entity. However, there is no reporting function for local jurisdictions to report back to the auditor how those dollars are being spent. Each jurisdiction is responsible for tracking and reporting their spending directly to OBM. OBM through guidance and the state auditor through their annual audit process will ultimately be responsible for oversight.
See below, per the language you forwarded to me:
The Office of Budget and Management (OBM), in accordance with HB 481, is distributing Coronavirus Relief Funds provided to the state from the US Department of Treasury as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (“CARES Act”). OBM is currently accepting registrations for the Local Government Assistance Program from counties and jurisdictions. Registrations enable the recipient of funds access to the grants portal to report on funds as required by OBM and HB 481. Funds must be used in accordance with the requirements of Section 5001 of the “Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act,” as described in 42 U.S.C. 801(d) and must adhere to guidance published by the US Department of Treasury and OBM. Resolutions, as required by HB 481, may be submitted to OBM via e-mail at email@example.com. While the CRF disbursements for cities, villages, and townships will flow from the state through county auditors, OBM considers each local government to be a subrecipient of the state and will structure reporting and monitoring that way.
You will need to request from the individual jurisdiction(s) their expenditures/appropriations. To that end, keep in mind that per HB 614 the deadline for encumbering funds was moved to November 20, 2020. So some jurisdictions may not have final determinations on spending until that time.
Entities that are eligible for funding, but do not encumber or spend all their money will have to return unused funds to my office for redistribution to the remaining entities based on the established formulas in the authorizing legislation. That will occur after November 20th and before November 25th. Currently, under the existing legislation, all CARES Act monies must be spent by December 30, 2020.
Lastly, I am attaching the spreadsheet my office submitted today to OBM which outlines all monies distributed in Lake County. This spreadsheet is our required preliminary reporting to OBM. Since local jurisdictions are getting their guidance from OBM, you may find this link helpful as well:
LFC summarized and sorted the detailed information given to us by the Auditor’s office. There were three separate payments to the various jurisdictions, but we felt that the totals were the most important.
As Mr. Galloway indicated above, we will have to reach out to each jurisdiction and get their actual spending to date and through December 30, 2020. It will be interesting to see how much money will be returned to the State of Ohio. What happens if the State does not agree with how the money has been spent by the jurisdiction? Will the State require the municipality or jurisdiction to reimburse the State?
Updated 10/19/20…based on the additional information provided by Mr. Galloway.
The distribution of the funds were are follows:
“Funds were distributed per the legislation. So in RD one it was based on the Local Government Fund Formula for Lake County. Rd 2 was the same LGF formula, but 50% of the Rd 1 funding. RD 3 (HB614) was based on population and those figures were calculated by OBM.”…per Mr. Galloway, Lake County Auditor
Stay tuned, we will follow up as we get more information.