The Federal Emergency Management Agency will be sending more than $2.2 million to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to reimburse Boston College for the cost of testing students, staff and faculty during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The $2,222,370 Public Assistance grant will reimburse the private Jesuit research university in Chestnut Hill for the cost of hiring extra staff and paying existing staff to operate the school’s inhouse testing program between July 2020 and June 2021.
Boston College set up its own testing program that included both collection sites at its three campuses as well as a testing laboratory that was able to process over 5,000 tests per day and deliver results within 24 hours.
To staff the laboratory, the college hired a lab technologist, lab technician, lab supervisor & assistant director, lab manager, senior lab technologist, and bio automation specialist & lab manager, who were part of a team of 54 employees who worked at total of 64,098 regular hours and 453 overtime hours.
“FEMA is pleased to be able to assist Boston College with these costs,” said FEMA Region 1 Regional Administrator Lori Ehrlich. “Reimbursing state, county, and municipal governments – as well as eligible non-profits and tribal entities – for the costs incurred during the COVID-19 pandemic is an important part of our nation’s ongoing recovery.”
FEMA’s Public Assistance program is an essential source of funding for states and communities recovering from a federally declared disaster or emergency.
So far, FEMA has provided more than $2.5 billion in Public Assistance grants to Massachusetts to reimburse the commonwealth for pandemic-related expenses.