Elgin contributes $50,000 to COVID fund

Updated 5/28/2020 5:54 PM

The city of Elgin is contributing $50,000 to the Elgin COVID Response Fund, which was established in partnership with local foundations and now totals nearly $150,000.

The city council voted 8-1 to approve the contribution Wednesday night.


"It's a grass-roots effort that came together with these various foundations," City Manager Rick Kozal said. "The city facilitated the coming together of this group and the determination was, if the city was going to be participating in this response, it made sense to walk the walk and make a contribution."

The funding will be distributed as grants of $500 to $7,500 to nonprofits, which in turn will disburse the money to residents facing "urgent financial need" as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Eligible nonprofits must have 501(c)3 designations, be in the greater Elgin area and have a "demonstrated history" of serving Elgin residents. Priority will go to agencies serving residents who are ineligible to receive benefits/assistance and those from vulnerable or disproportionately affected communities.

Residents can use the money for food, housing/rental assistance, utilities, medical costs associated with the coronavirus, and masks and gloves.

"This is money that is going directly to our residents," Councilwoman Tish Powell said.

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Councilman Toby Shaw cast the only "no" vote. On Thursday, Shaw said he would rather disburse city funds via direct request from nonprofits, like the city did with a $150,000 emergency loan to Food for Greater Elgin in March.

The fund is a partnership that includes Grand Victoria Foundation, United Way of Metro Chicago, the Seigle Family Foundation, the Wisdom Family Foundation, the Hoffer Family Foundation, the Kaptain Family Trust and the city.

"These are extraordinary times that require extraordinary efforts. That is why the Seigle Family Foundation is proud to be a part of this steering committee that consists of several of the family and private foundations who have been committed to Elgin long before the pandemic and will be committed long after," Mark Seigle said in a news release. "We are asking our fellow Elginites to donate to this important fund. Any contribution will be a contribution that goes back into our community, into the hands of our neighbors in need."

Nonprofits must submit applications for the Elgin COVID Response Fund by June 17 at cffrv.gives/Elgin-apply. Grant decisions will be announced the week of July 8.

The fund is administered at no cost by the Community Foundation of the Fox River Valley, with 100% of donations going back into the community. Donations can be made at cffrv.gives/elgin-covid.


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