Chattanooga looks to use $1.7 million in COVID-19 relief funds for employee bonuses

Additional funds would boost local businesses, meet other pandemic needs

Staff Photo by Robin Rudd/ Chattanooga City Hall can be seen on February 13, 2019.

The city of Chattanooga wants to use federal COVID-19 relief funds to provide $1.7 million in unexpected end-of-year bonuses to employees.

In a presentation to the City Council on Tuesday, Chief Operating Officer Maura Sullivan said the one-time supplemental payments to all employees who worked throughout the pandemic would take up the largest share of available CARES Act funding.

"I am thrilled to come before you with this news, a little bleary-eyed as you would also see from members of the finance team," she said. "We have received about $2.5 million in reimbursement from the state for CARES Act dollars, and we're excited about that. And this allows us - along with some very, very tight budgeting that we've been doing, and taking care of our budget in the way that we have with our hiring freeze and other items that we've done to keep our cost measures in check - this allows us to be able to offer a one-time supplement to employees.