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Pitkin County pandemic expenses increase to more than $10 million

More than $3 million in additional funding for local COVID-related projects, grants and vaccinations were approved by county commissioners.

PITKIN COUNTY, Colorado — Pitkin County commissioners Wednesday approved more than $3 million in additional funding for local COVID-related projects, grants and vaccinations.

The additional money came in the form of supplemental budget requests for the first quarter of the year and increases the amount the county has spent on addressing the COVID-19 pandemic to more than $10 million since it began a little more than a year ago.

The latest funding — a little more than $3.2 million — took the form of $1.3 million in grants to local businesses negatively affected by the pandemic, $400,000 in grants to local nonprofits suffering the same fate and $750,000 to pay for vaccination clinics at the Benedict Music Tent parking lot, according to a memo to commissioners from budget director Connie Baker.

Other parts of the latest money went toward funding the 5 Star State Certification Program for local businesses, other consumer protection efforts, adding to the county’s contact tracing staff and setting up communication strategies for non-English speakers and a COVID hotline, according to the memo.

Much of the newly allocated money is likely to be recouped, however.

First, FEMA is expected to reimburse Pitkin County the $750,000 for the vaccination clinics, Baker said. 

> Watch video above: New COVID dial 3.0 goes into effect Wednesday

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