Emergency Solutions Grant – CARES Act Code Blue (ESG-CV)


The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act of 2020 (CARES Act) provided for a supplemental appropriation of Homeless Assistance Grants under the Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG) as authorized by McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act of 1987 (P.L. 100-77), as amended by the Homeless Emergency Assistance and Rapid Transition to Housing (HEARTH) Act of 2009 (P.L. 111-22) (42 U.S.C.S.§11371 et. seq.).

The CARES Act provided for two allocations of homeless assistance funds to prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus, among individuals and families who are homeless or receiving homeless assistance and to support additional homeless assistance and homelessness prevention activities to mitigate the impacts created by coronavirus.

The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, through the Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED), has received the second allocation of ESG-CV funds – an appropriation of $19,930,907 based on the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) formula accounting for variables that quantify the population currently experiencing and at risk of homelessness. DCED is reserving a portion of the ESG-CV funds to be used toward emergency shelter in preparation for the winter months 2020-2021. This request for applications entitled ESG-CV Code Blue, will allow applicants to apply for funding for emergency shelter and temporary emergency shelter to expand shelter for those experiencing literal homelessness. DCED’s priority for the use of these ESG funds will be to assist homeless providers and communities prepare for, prevent the spread of and respond to the coronavirus through the use of emergency shelter and temporary emergency shelter components.


Only eligible activities noted below and as further defined in the Emergency Solutions Grant Interim Rule, published in the Federal Register on December 5, 2011 and further detailed in HUD CPD Notice 20-08 addressing immediate needs of emergency shelter and street outreach related to the winter sheltering activity are eligible in this round of funding. ESG-CV funds may be used for any single activity or combination of eligible activities as outlined below and address the priorities and any published supplemental requirements of the CARES Act in order to prepare for, prevent the spread of and respond to the coronavirus. Street outreach activities under this application must show a direct relationship to the winter temporary shelter activity being provided.

  • Emergency Shelter (no cap on the amount of funds that may be requested for Shelter)
    • Emergency Shelter Operations (no cap)
    • Emergency Shelter Essential Services
    • Emergency Shelter Hazard Pay
    • Emergency Shelter Renovation
  • Temporary Shelter
    • Essential Services
    • Operations
    • Leasing existing property or temporary structures
    • Acquisition
    • Renovation
  • Street Outreach
    • Essential Services
    • Case Management
    • Street Outreach Hazard Pay
  • Homeless Management Information System (HMIS)
  • Administration (subgrantees may request up to 6% for administration)


DCED will accept applications from any general-purpose unit of local government, including cities, boroughs, and townships, towns, counties, home rule municipalities, and communities that desire to apply “on behalf of” other municipalities. Local governments may apply “on behalf of” nonprofit organizations. Non-profit organizations are eligible to apply only for a regional project as long as it demonstrates a regional need and serving multiple counties. (DCED defines “regional” as more than one county.) Non-profits seeking to directly apply for emergency shelter activity must receive a certification from the unit of local government for the geographic area in which those activities are to be carried out. (A sample certification is included in the application addenda.)


$15,000 minimum and no maximum.

NO match is required for funds awarded under the ESG-CV Code Blue.


Refer to program guidelines and application kit.

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