STOCKTON, Calif. (KTXL) — More coronavirus relief funding is coming to the city of Stockton as the number of cases, hospitalizations and deaths continue to grow across San Joaquin County.
“We’re also now at 52 deaths, which aren’t just numbers but they’re family members, they’re cousins and uncles and aunts, moms and dads,” Stockton Mayor Michael Tubbs said.
Tubbs announced Wednesday the state will give the city $27 million to help with its COVID-19 response. He says he joined other mayors to lobby the governor for more money despite the county being granted $133 million in federal CARES Act funding in March.
“To this day, the city has received zero dollars from the county to deal with the rising cases to deal with the support you all need for your small businesses, or for rental relief, or to expand testing, etcetera,” Tubbs said.
Tubbs anticipates the city will receive the money in a few weeks and has directed the city manager to come up with a plan on how to best spend it by their next meeting.
He says he hopes that plan will address some of the city’s biggest needs including housing homeless individuals who may be infected.
“Continue buying hotels, motels, etcetera, so that we have units to put people in, and we also build on the permanent housing units we need to end chronic homelessness in our city,” Tubbs said.
Tubbs says he would also like to see some of that money go to residents for direct assistance and be used for more small business support.
“We want to make sure that we’re continuing our small business relief and showing that the small business owners who make our community what it is. I give them what they need so doors stay open,” Tubbs said.
The mayor says while he’s thankful to receive the $27 million, he will continue to fight for more funding from the county.
“People are struggling financially. We know that bills have not taken a break. We know that bills are stacking up and we know that it has to go out to you, the people, to assist you in ensuring that you’re able to persist and meet basic needs during this time,” he said.
The Stockton City Council will discuss and vote on how to spend that $27 million at its next meeting on July 14.