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COVID Recovery Funding

Buncombe County has been awarded about $50 million in federal COVID Recovery Funding to directly address COVID response efforts and peripheral economic fallout from the pandemic. This recovery funding for local governments is just one part of an overall package of aid to local communities supported by the American Rescue Plan Act.

What can COVID Recovery Funding be used for?

The federal government provides guidance about how this money can be used and when projects must be started and completed.

Buncombe County is committed to investing these funds in projects that:

  • Align to county strategic plan and community priorities
  • Support equitable outcomes for most impacted populations
  • Leverage and align with other governmental funding sources
  • Make best use of this one-time infusion of resources
  • Have a lasting impact
Table: COVID Recovery Allowed Projects
Example Allowable Projects
Health clinics Broadband expansion & internet access Public health program improvements Food assistance Job training
Mental health treatment Homelessness services Small business loans Building ventilation improvements Affordable housing
Small business grants Vaccination Clean water projects Premium pay for essential workers Early learning & childcare
Community health workers Educational support Crisis intervention Home visiting programs Green infrastructure
Personal protective equipment Water & sewer infrastructure Violence Prevention Rent & mortgage assistance Overdose prevention

For a complete list of eligible categories and examples of allowable projects, view the Funding Categories. For more information about community-identified needs, check out our survey results.

COVID Recovery Funding Key Dates

Buncombe County is taking action to create a recovery response that engages the local community and provides an inclusive process for fund distribution, including the following key steps.

Table: COVID Recovery Funding Key Dates
Dates Purpose
March 11, 2021 American Rescue Plan Act signed into law
March 30, 2021 Commissioner priority setting
April 21 – May 14, 2021 Community survey about recovery funding priorities
May 10, 2021 U.S. Treasury released initial spending guidance
May 19, 2021 Received first tranche (half) of funds: $25,366,645
June 1, 2021 Board of Commissioners added the funds to the budget
June 3, 2021 Released Request for Proposals (RFP)
June 17, 2021 Recovery Funding workshop
July 15, 2021 RFP closed
July 15 - August 31, 2021 Proposal review
August 31, 2021 Initial awards announced
September 21, 2021
3:00PM - 5:00PM
COVID-19 Recovery Funding Applicant Input Session #1
During Board of Commissioners Briefing Meeting
September 24, 2021
12:00PM - 1:30PM
Recovery Funding Community Input Session
Commissioner District 1
September 27, 2021
4:00PM - 5:30PM
Recovery Funding Community Input Session
Commissioner District 2
September 28, 2021
6:00PM - 7:30PM
Recovery Funding Community Input Session
Commissioner District 3
October 5, 2021
3:00PM - 5:00PM
COVID-19 Recovery Funding Applicant Input Session #2
During Board of Commissioners Briefing Meeting
October 19, 2021
4:00PM - 5:00PM
COVID-19 Recovery Funding Applicant Input Session for County Departments
During Board of Commissioners Briefing Meeting

Funded Projects

Buncombe County will make rolling awards and will potentially have additional application rounds.

See below for the projects awarded to date. In deciding what projects to immediately prioritize, Commissioners evaluated more than 7,600 community survey responses and nearly 150 project proposals, assessed the equity of initiatives, considered opportunities for partnerships and matching funding, and weighed other factors.



Buncombe County is committed to transparency so that the community can follow along with how Recovery Funding is being spent and the results of the investments.

Stay tuned for more reporting in the months to come.


ARPA Community Input Sessions

The Board of Commissioners hosted public input sessions specific to Buncombe County's planned use of American Rescue Plan Act funds at the end of September 2021. You can view recordings of these sessions below.

September 24, 2021

September 27, 2021

September 28, 2021

The RFP period was open from June 3 - July 15, 2021. We are no longer accepting applications at this time.

Workshop - A virtual funding workshop was held on June 17, 2021 from 3:30-5 p.m.

Initial awards will be announced at the beginning of September 2021.

Download the COVID recovery funding workshop presentation.

English Recording

Spanish Recording

Locate & Contact

Community Investment


Rachael Nygaard
Director of Strategic Partnerships
200 College Street
Asheville, NC 28801
P. (828) 250-6536

Community Investment
200 College Street, Suite 300
Asheville, NC 28801

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