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Press Releases - County Council

Council introduces $750,000 special appropriation to feed Montgomery County residents and families

For Immediate Release: Tuesday, April 28, 2020

ROCKVILLE, Md., ‪April 28, 2020—Today the full Council introduced a $750,000 special appropriation initiated by Councilmembers Gabe Albornoz, Nancy Navarro and Craig Rice to help address the County's increasing level of food insecurity among community members and their families.  The economic hardships experienced by countless County residents as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic have created ever-increasing and sustained demands on food banks, nonprofit providers and community service partners providing food assistance.  Councilmember Albornoz is chair of the Health and Human Services Committee; Councilmember Navarro is chair of the Government Operations and Fiscal Policy Committee; and Councilmember Rice is chair of the Education and Culture Committee.


The $750,000 in funding would be allocated as follows: $400,000 for nonprofit organizations with existing contracts or grants to provide food assistance; $300,000 to secure ethnic and culturally appropriate food items from ethnic grocery stores located in the County to be distributed in areas with high concentrations of vulnerable populations; and $50,000 to increase the County's contract with the Montgomery County Food Council to provide continued planning, coordination and implementation of food security efforts.  


The funding from the special appropriation will be provided through the Montgomery County Government Covid-19 Human Services and Community Assistance Non-Departmental Account (NDA). The funding will be administered by the County's Department of Health and Human Services.  The Department of Health and Human Services has also directed $500,000 in additional funds to provide immediate support to food assistance providers and this special appropriation will further this ongoing and essential work.  


Section 308 of the County Charter provides that a special appropriation is an appropriation which states that it is necessary to meet an unforeseen disaster or other emergency, or to act without delay in the public interest. Each special appropriation shall be approved by not less than six Councilmembers. The Council may approve a special appropriation at any time after public notice by news release. 


Each special appropriation must specify the source of funds to finance it, and this funding would be paid for by the County's General Fund Reserves.  In addition, the County will seek federal and state reimbursement for any eligible costs.  The County also is committed to collaborating with the philanthropic sector to maximize the assistance that can be provided. 


The Council staff report on this special appropriation can be viewed here. A public hearing and Council vote is currently scheduled for ‪April 30, 2020.

Councilmember Albornoz:
Lillian Cruz

Councilmember Navarro:
Ikhide Roland Ikheloa

Councilmember Rice:
Sharon Ledner

Release ID: 20-175
Media Contact: Lillian Cruz 240-777-7801