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Molinaro Directs $2.3 Million in Coronavirus Relief to Residents and Small Businesses
Small business grants, childcare assistance, eviction prevention and local municipal projects

Published: 12/22/2020

For More Information Contact:

Colleen Pillus, Communications Director


Poughkeepsie … Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro announced today Dutchess County continues to address the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and provide assistance to low- and moderate-income residents and small businesses with more than $2.3 million Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding. County Executive Molinaro announced today new initiatives being implemented – eviction prevention program and local municipal projects for senior citizens.  These new initiatives are in addition to the small business grant program and the childcare relief scholarships already underway.

County Executive Molinaro said, “Families with low and moderate incomes, as well as local small businesses, have been particularly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, and Dutchess County is proud to implement programs that will provided much-needed support to these families and assist our community’s businesses in surviving. As we have since the pandemic began, Dutchess County continues to offer assistance to families and businesses hit hard by these difficult times, and these new initiatives are the latest examples of our efforts.”

To address these needs, the County has allocated CARES funding as follows; some of the these programs have been previously announced, others are being implemented:

  • Nearly $1.3M in eviction prevention to ensure housing stability;
  • More than $450,000 in economic development relief for small businesses;
  • Over $400,000 to childcare to assist parents balancing work and student remote learning;
  • More than $150,000 for local municipal projects promoting food security and safety for seniors.

Eviction Prevention

While there is a temporary moratorium for most evictions, it is currently set to expire January 31, 2021, and many households will likely struggle to pay past due rent.  Dutchess County has committed nearly $1.3 million to help families avoid eviction.   Starting in February 2021, funding will be available to provide retroactive rent and utility relief for up to 6 consecutive months for those who lost wages as a result of the coronavirus and meet the income guidelines in the chart below.*   

Dutchess County will partner with a non-profit(s) to administrator this program via a competitive Requests for Proposals (RFP) process. The program will support rent and utility arrears, eviction prevention support services and legal assistance. Eligible residents can complete the Eviction Prevention Form and will be contacted in February when the program administrator is selected.

2020 Dutchess County Low- and Moderate-Income Eligibility Limits

Persons in Household









80% area mean income










Local Municipal Projects to promoting food security and safety for seniors

The following municipalities applied for and were awarded CARES funding, based on the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) income guidelines, for efforts to promote food security and safety at local senior centers to enable them to be open for seniors.

City of Beacon:  $25,000 for assistance to a local food bank to purchase food for distribution to low- and moderate-income households. 

Town of Beekman: $20,000 for touchless bathroom fixtures for the Town’s senior program

Town of Dover: $17,200 award for substantive meals and home-keeping necessities for homebound seniors. 

Town of East Fishkill:  $20,000 award for HEPA sterilization units and UV air purifiers at the senior center.

Town of Hyde Park:  $29,500 award for plexiglass partitions, air purifiers and UV-C lights, Wi-Fi network upgrades and 7 laptops at the senior center, as well as tent for outdoor programming.

Town of Poughkeepsie: $15,950 award for plexi-glass barriers, hand sanitizing stations, wall-mounted thermometers, HEPA filter, air purifiers, gloves/wipes/masks for the senior center.

Town of Pine Plains: $26,542 award for support to Willow Roots food pantry to purchase food for distribution to low- and moderate-income families.


Small Business Support

As previously announced, Dutchess County has partnered with Community Capital New York (CCNY) to provide $430,000 to assist microenterprise businesses negatively affected by COVID using funds from the earlier tranche and funding is still available.  The program provides up to $10,000 grant to stabilize microenterprises and preserve low- and moderate-income jobs. A microenterprise is defined as a business with 5 or fewer employees (including the owner). Funds remain available under this program and additional information and application can be found at the CCNY website. 


Childcare Support

As previously announced, Dutchess County partnered with the Child Care Council of Dutchess & Putnam (CCCDP) to provide support to low- and moderate-income families who do not have means and resources to address the competing need for parents to work and children to have supervision and attend school virtually.   The Childcare Relief Scholarships cover 75 percent of a child’s daily tuition through the end of the school year. Thirty-four (34) scholarships were originally awarded.   The County has been able to open a second round of scholarships and additional 45 scholarships will be awarded by random selection from the remaining applications.

County Executive Molinaro said, “Families and local businesses are the very fabric of this community we all hold so dear, and Dutchess County continues to look for innovative ways of supporting those who find themselves in need as a result of the pandemic. Confronted with unprecedented obstacles, our county will continue to search for inventive solutions to these vexing challenges. We will overcome this pandemic as a community, and we’ll do so – together.”

CARES Act funding is awarded to the County through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) to respond to the pandemic. These funds must be used for low and moderate income Dutchess County residents who do not exceed 80 percent of the county’s median income limits.

*These funds cannot be used within the City of Poughkeepsie because the City receives its own CDBG fund and has committed funds to similar priorities. City of Poughkeepsie residents are not eligible for these County programs but can apply through the City of Poughkeepsie for similar opportunities.