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Long Beach School District to receive grant from Town of Hempstead for Covid expenses

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The Long Beach school district is among 36 in Hempstead Town that will receive up to $150,000 from the federal Cares Act set up to congress to help municipalities suffering from the covid pandemic.

The funding was approved by the Hempstead town board Tuesday.

In total for the 36 school districts, the grants amount to $5.4 million. In addition to Long Beach, grants will also to school districts in Hempstead, Uniondale, Bellmore-Merrick and Oceanside.

The initiative was announced last month at a news conference.

“As the year is coming to an end, I would like to thank Senator (Chuck) Schumer one last time for his part in securing the funding for initiatives like this that have and continue to help tens of thousands of Hempstead residents,” Hempstead Town Supervisor Don Clavin said last month. “Our schools stepped up to their responsibility of educating children in spite of the challenges arisen by the pandemic. One of the challenges has been equipping the schools according to protocols to protect students, staff members and their families.”

In October, Long Beach school officials said that covid related expenses could cost the district nearly $4 million. The expenses included PPE, extra teachers and online resources for students. The district used funds from its unassigned fund balance or “rainy day fund” to make up the cost.

Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Jenifer Gallagher could not be reached for comment.

In the midst of the pandemic, the town, which has a population of more than 800,000 residents, was awarded $133 million from the Cares Act. More than $70 million of those funds were used for the town’s payroll, which Democratic lawmakers have questioned and have asked for a federal probe to investigate the use of those funds.

Clavin has dismissed those claims and stated that the expenses were necessary.