You Paid For It: CARES Act money slow to go to COVID-19 hit communities

You Paid For It

ST. LOUIS, Mo. – Some feel they’re getting short-changed in the fight against the pandemic as COVID-19 cases continue to rise. Several mayors in north Saint Louis County say they are lacking the tools to deal with the crisis that’s getting worse.

“The situation is definitely getting worse, Elliott. We’re seeing numbers increase in the south St. Louis area we’re in right now. It is a hot spot here. We’re also seeing an increase in the north city and north county area,” said Senior Vice President of Affinia Healthcare Dr. Kendra Holmes.

“I think in the beginning it was definitely, ‘Everyone knows that testing was not available in north city and some areas of south city,’ initially. I think we ramped it up quite a bit. But, we unfortunately we’re still seeing the increase in cases.”

Affinia Healthcare is alarmed by what they seen in the poor and minority areas in st louis city and county, especially in north county. North county mayors have been waging a battle with St. Louis County and Dr. Sam Page since the crisis began. They say that they are just not getting all the help that they need. They say that’s still the case.

CARES Act money was designated for municipalities to help them cover the cost of the crisis. These mayors say the county has just given them half of what they’re due.
Vinita Park Mayor James McGee says he’s supposed to get over $70,000 more. But the county is sitting on his money that’s sorely needed for public safety and other expenses

Mayor Brian Jackson of Beverly Hills says Sam Page and St. Louis County have been slow giving them the money to help the municipalities, the small businesses, and in the beginning for testing.

“We did not get all that we needed at the time we needed it. Even now we’re waiting on another half of the money. We’ve already exceeded the small amoun that they sent us,” said Mayor Jackson.

“I don’t think the ball was dropped. I think there was limited information that was known about COVID-19 in the beginning,” said Dr. Kendra Holmes.

Affinia Healthcare says they will continue the testing and hope that more people wear masks.

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