State to Counties: We’ll Frontload CARES Funds With Your Plan AND Agreement

The Department of Budget and Management has revised its guidance on the distribution of federal Coronavirus Relief Funds – indicating that a county with an approved spending plan and indemnification agreement may receive “frontloaded” distributions, rather than waiting for item-by-item reimbursement.

Today’s letter from Secretary Brinkley indicates a path forward for jurisdictions concerned that a purely spend-then-reimburse may slow, or even prohibit, local programs under the new funds. The full contents of the letter are included below:


MACo, in a letter signed by a multitude of county leaders, had expressed concern that the reimbursement-only model would hamper these much-needed local efforts. See Conduit Street coverage: “Counties: Proposed Reimbursement Model for CARES Funds Too Slow.

The letter is also available as a pdf document, and was sent to each county chief elected official.

DBM letter – County CRF Distribution

Michael Sanderson

Executive Director Maryland Association of Counties