Iowa City City Council gives $1.5 million to Johnson County Direct Assistance Program

Following an unanimous vote by the Iowa City City Council, the Johnson County Direct Assistance Program has grown $1.5 million to allow the county to distribute 1,000 additional checks.


Gabby Drees

Iowa City mayor Bruce Teague speaks with city attorney Eric Goers and city manager Geoff Fruin before an Iowa City City Council meeting at City Hall in Iowa City on Tuesday, April 19, 2022.

Emily Delgado, News Reporter

Additional Johnson County residents will receive checks from the Johnson County Direct Assistance Program after the Iowa City City Council transferred $1.5 million to the fund.

The program’s money goes to helping residents who were negatively affected economically by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The $1.5 million is coming out of the city’s first half of American Rescue Plan Act funds given from the federal government. The vote came after numerous discussions among the city council and hearing from stakeholders in the community.

The unanimous vote by the Iowa City City Council will allow for Johnson County to distribute 1,000 additional checks to people who qualify to receive assistance.

The qualifications include:

  • Lived in Johnson County on March 1, 2020, and continue to live in Johnson County
  • Are a legal adult or emancipated minor
  • Earn less than $45,000 annually
  • Experienced unemployment, housing insecurity, food insecurity, or exclusion from federal pandemic stimulus payments and expanded pandemic unemployment benefits following the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Residents who participate in state and federal assistance programs like SNAP

Although the city council will be depositing the $1.5 million to a county-wide program, the money will only be used to help Iowa City residents who fit the criteria outlined by the county.

The Johnson County Direct Assistance Program now has a total of $3.5 million after votes from the Iowa City City Council and the Johnson County Board of Supervisors.

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