Summit County's CARES Funding

Summit County received a direct allocation of over $94 million from the CARES Act. The Summit County Executive's Office, led by Executive Ilene Shapiro, immediately began planning how this money could be quickly and effectively spent to help our 31 communities families and businesses.

The County Executive's Office was able to spend this money for the benefit of our residents and businesses through collaboration with County offices, community organizations and non-profits, and the government leaders in Summit County's 31 communities. 

Division of COVID Response

Health and Safety of our Citizens

Community COVID-19 Testing - $1.4 million

According to public health experts, a testing plan helps to contain the COVID-19 virus by assuring we are able to identify cases and mitigate the risk of hotspots or outbreaks. In response to this need, Executive Shapiro and Summit County Council authorized the distribution of $1.4 million of Summit County's CARES Act funds to go towards the creation of a community testing program. Summit County Public Health has used the funds to pay for the cost of equipment, necessary materials, personnel, laboratory costs, and other supplies needed to operate the mass testing program.

Payroll Support for Police, Fire, EMS, and Dispatch Support - $32.1 million

We know that properly-funded emergency services are crucial for for the health and safety of communities. In order to maintain services and keep emergency personnel employed, Executive Shapiro and Summit County Council directed $26.6 million of CARES funding to Summit County's 31 communities and the University of Akron to be used to support police, fire, EMS, and dispatch operation.

Summit County partnered with the governments of our 31 communities on this initiative.

PPE Supplies - $1.1 million

From the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Summit County has prioritized the distribution of critical PPE supplies to our community. So far, Summit County Public Health and the Executive's Office have distributed PPE supplies to 593 organizations, including nursing homes, first responders, dentists, and more. The distributed PPE supplies were acquired by the use of CARES Act funds, from the state and federal government, and from community donations in early March.

Public School Re-Opening Grants - $7.3 million

The health and safety of our students, teachers, and school administrators is extremely important as our schools return to in-person classes this fall or plan for it in the spring. Executive Shapiro and Summit County Council approved the distribution of $7.3 million of CARES Act funds to Summit County's 17 public school districts last month. These funds have been used by the school districts to purchase PPE equipment, offset cleaning expenses, and ensure a safe environment for our community's children.

Summit County partnered with the governments of our 31 communities and the 17 public school districts on this initiative.


Support for Families

Rent and Mortgage Assistance - $10.3 million

Now more than ever, stable housing is crucial to the safety and well-being of Summit County residents. Keeping families safely housed during the pandemic has been a top priority for Executive Shapiro and Summit County Council. Over $10.3 million of CARES Act funds have been allocated for rent and mortgage assistance. The Summit County CARES Rent, Mortgage, and Utility Assistance Program received over 7,500 applications for assistance in July and September.

This funding was distributed in partnership with United Way of Summit and Medina Counties.

Utility Assistance - $2 million

Keeping families safely housed during the pandemic has been a top priority for Executive Shapiro and Summit County Council. Helping families pay their utilities is crucial for ensuring continued stable housing.

This funding was distributed in partnership with United Way of Summit and Medina Counties.

Akron-Canton Regional Foodbank - $467,000

No family should have to worry about where their next meal is coming from. It is the mission of the Akron-Canton Regional Foodbank to empower people to experience healthy and hunger-free lives. In 2020, this mission is even more crucial as we face the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting economic struggles. In March, Executive Shapiro and Summit County Council approved the allocation of over $200,000 of Summit County's Federal CARES Act funds to the Foodbank. This year alone the County has allocated over $460,000 to the Foodbank because as a community, we know how important it is to support our neighbors.

Back to School Backpacks - $25,000

Executive Shapiro and Summit County Council allocated $25,000 to provide backbacks and other back-to-school supplies for children in Summit County. Helping to prepare our communities' children for school ensures quality education and relieves some stress from parents and caregivers.

This funding was distributed in partnership with the Akron Childrens Museum.

Older Adult Technology and Assistance- $610,000

Our older adults living independently and in congregate facilities are facing unique challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Because this virus is especially dangerous the older an individual is, our older adults, their families and those who advocate for them have had to drastically alter how they interact. Executive Shapiro and Summit County Council recently passed legislation to send $610,000 in federal CARES Act funding to Direction Home Akron-Canton for the purchase of devices and wireless internet hotspots for older adults, the development of nursing facility support resources and for meals and wellness kits.

This funding was distributed in partnership with Direction Home Akron-Canton.


Support for Small Businesses

Small Business Relief Grants - $12.4 million

We know that small businesses are the backbone of our local economy and support many families that live here in Summit County. Getting crucial support to these businesses has been the top priority of Executive Shapiro and County Council over the past six months. In collaboration with Greater Akron Chamber and our 31 communities, Summit County created the Small Business Relief Grant Program, which has distributed over $12.4 million in grants to more than 3000 small businesses in our County using CARES Act funds. Summit County was one of the first Counties to create a Small Business Grant Program and the program has been used as a model for other communities around the nation.

This funding was distributed in partnership with the Greater Akron Chamber.

Minority Access Contractor Capital Access Program - $1 million

MCCAP is a collaborative initiative to provide financial and technical assistance to Akron and Summit County-based minority, women, LGBTQ, disabled and veteran-owned contracting businesses. The program is designed to support minority contractors and provide opportunities for long-term success and stability. The program is an important piece of Summit County efforts to provide COVID-19 relief for hard hit minority businesses by providing access to capital which will allow these businesses to have opportunities to bid on projects

This funding was distributed in partnership with the the Western Reserve Community Fund and Development Finance Authority of Summit County.


Support for Non-Profits and Government Organizations

Non-Profit & Arts & Culture Grants - $6.5 million

As the demand for basic needs increases due to unemployment and workforce disruption, non-profits expect charitable giving and government funding for social services to fall, leading to a gap between the need for services and the ability to provide services. Non-profits in Summit County are essential to keeping our community strong. From providing food, clothing and shelter to job training and education opportunities, our local non-profits provide vital services to residents each and every day. Summit County allocated $5 million to non-profit entities that help to provide for basic needs and $1.5 million to arts and culture service providers.

This funding was distributed in partnership with the Akron Community Foundation.

Fairlawn Grant & Virtual Courtroom -$7.5 million

As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and the restrictions it places on gatherings and face-to-face interaction, Summit County Executive Ilene Shapiro’s Division of Public Safety began investigating the feasibility of holding hearings, assessments, and all other court proceedings allowed by law, virtually. Following consultation with subject matter experts, it was determined the Criminal Justice Integrated Technology Project would require a secure and dedicated high-speed fiber network. The CARES funding will be used to expand FairlawnGig to County and Akron municipal buildings that hold criminal justice proceedings or house inmates. The expansion will facilitate virtual court proceedings to increase the safety and security of law enforcement, court employees, inmates and the general public.

Summit County partnered with the City of Fairlawn and the City of Akron for this initiative.

Summit County Covid Response - $4.7 million

The Division of COVID-19 Response was created by Summit County Executive Ilene Shapiro and Summit County Council in March to help relieve Summit County's government offices and the public service agencies in our County. Staff were assigned internally to clean and sanatize central locations in county buildings, oversee temperature-taking in county buildings, and perform other related, essential jobs. Externally, staff were assigned to assist with United Way of Summit and Medina Counties' 2-1-1 call center. Summit County allocated $4.7 million to support this initiative.



For more information on Summit County's response to COVID-19, please visit the Summit County COVID-19 Response page linked below.

Questions about COVID-19? Call the Summit County Public Health call line: (330) 926-5795 or visit the Summit County Public Health COVID-19 Dashboard linked below.

Public Health Logo