Louisiana virus aid programs run dry with requests pending

Louisiana virus aid programs run dry with requests pending
Louisiana virus aid programs run dry with requests pending Photo credit Getty Images-marekuliasz

(AP) — Louisiana will run out of federal coronavirus money before it pays out grants to all eligible small businesses and local government agencies seeking dollars from COVID-19 aid programs.

Officials running the programs told the House and Senate budget committee Friday they received more applications than the dollars allocated by Gov. John Bel Edwards and lawmakers.

The money comes from direct coronavirus aid that Louisiana received from Congress. Lawmakers earmarked nearly $525 million to reimburse local government agencies’ virus-related expenses.

They steered another $260 million to small business grants.

The Edwards administration says it has $431 million in outstanding, eligible reimbursement applications from local governments that it can't pay.