GUIDANCE TO RECEIVE INDIVIDUAL ASSISTANCE
Congress passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which allocated funding to provide direct financial relief to American families as we deal with the impacts of the coronavirus.
The IRS has issued updated guidance on how to ensure that you receive your payment in a timely manner.
FINANCIAL STABILITY RESOURCES
211 is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to connect residents with resources for food, paying housing bills, mental health services and more. For assistance, dial 2-1-1, (561) 383-1112, or text your zip code to TXT211 (898211). Service is free and confidential. For more information, visit the 211 website.
If you are unable to meet basic needs like housing, food and healthcare:
HOME ENERGY NEEDS:
The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) helps keep families safe and healthy through initiatives that assist families with energy costs. Apply online via the Agricultural and Labor Program, Inc., ALPI website.
UNITED WAY OF MARTIN COUNTY:
To assist Martin County individuals and families who are impacted by COVID-19, United Way of Martin County is launching the COVID-19 Community Economic Relief Fund and has authorized up to $200,000 from their emergency fund to aid in recovery efforts.
United Way of Martin County is working with local direct service organizations to disseminate emergency funds with the appropriate sense of urgency. Learn more via the United Way Martin County website.
BOYS & GIRLS CLUB OF MARTIN COUNTY:
The Boys & Girls Clubs of Martin County will provide meals to children under the age of 18, regardless of whether or not they are club members. Free, ready-to-eat meals for families are also available. Meals provided will include dinner and a snack, and can be picked up drive-through style outside the clubs.
- Youth can stop by from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.
- Families can pick up from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.
- Those picking up meals can arrive on foot, by bike or by car
- Meals are available for pick up at:
- Cloe-Clark Club, 11500 SE Lares Ave., Hobe Sound
- Bill & Barbara Whitman Club, 17375 SW Palm Beach St., Indiantown
- H. Wayne Huizenga Club, 1150 SW Martin Downs Blvd., Palm City
- John & Marge Bolton Club, 4731 SE Flounder Ave., Stuart
FOOD FOR KIDS OUT OF SCHOOL:
The Martin County School District's Food & Nutrition Services (FNS) Department will serve free meals to children in our community from 9:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. through Friday, May 1. Meals will be served to children aged 18 and under at the following locations:
- Hobe Sound Elementary School
11555 SE Gomez Avenue, Hobe Sound
- J.D. Parker Elementary School
1010 E. 10th Street, Stuart
- Jensen Beach Elementary School
2525 NE Savannah Road, Jensen Beach
- Port Salerno Elementary School
3260 SE Lionel Terrace, Stuart
- Warfield Elementary School
15260 SW 150th Street, Indiantown
FOOD ASSISTANCE PROGRAM:
The Florida Department of Children and Families' Food Assistance Program helps people with low-income buy healthy food. To apply for the Food Assistance Program (SNAP), please visit the Florida Department of Children and Families website.
HOUSE OF HOPE FOOD DISTRIBUTION:
House of Hope is distributing prepackaged food directly into client’s vehicles. Clients on foot and bicycle will also be served. Those new to the House of Hope will need to bring the following information to access the service:
- Picture ID
- Proof of Martin County residency (current lease, mortgage or utility bill)
- For questions, call (772) 286-4673
TREASURE COAST FOOD BANK:
Treasure Coast Food Bank supports a network of local emergency food assistance programs. If you are in need of food, please contact one of our agency partners listed on the Stop Hunger website.
For further assistance, contact the Treasure Coast Food Bank Partner Relations Dept. at (772) 489-3034 between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.
MEALS ON WHEELS MARTIN COUNTY:
Are you in need of meal delivery due to COVID-19? Call Meals on Wheels at (772) 223-7826 or (772) 223-7825 to sign up. The Council on Aging's Meals on Wheels program provides hot, noontime meals for those who are unable to shop or cook.
Although Meals on Wheels primarily serves seniors, it is available to all Martin County residents who have a need for this service, whether on a permanent or temporary basis (for example, following surgery). For more information, visit the Kane Center website.
The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity has extended the unemployment benefits hotline hours to better serve individuals seeking assistance. The hotline is now available seven days a week at (800) 681-8102.
Governor DeSantis has waived the eligibility requirements for claimants currently seeking unemployment. Claimants do not need to register with the state job search portal (Employ Florida) and do not need to submit the number of employers they contact each week.
The suspension of these requirements has a retroactive start date of March 15, 2020 through May 2, 2020 pursuant to Governor’s Order 20-52. For more information, visit the Florida DEO website.
If you do not have internet access and need assistance completing the on-line application, please contact Martin County Health and Human Services at (772) 288-5785. In addition, if you need help with finding employment, please visit www.careersourcerc.com or contact Career Source at (866) 482-4473.
RESOURCES FOR SENIORS
The Council on Aging of Martin County has resources for Martin County seniors in need. For more information related to meal delivery, the emergency food pantry, 24-hour hotline, caregiver counseling, case manager navigator and the Day Medical Center, visit the Kane Center website.
RESOURCES FOR VETERANS
The Florida Veterans Foundation has teamed up with the American Legion of Florida to create the COVID-19 Project Vet Relief Fund. This will help with emergency assistance for those veterans who are affected by this pandemic around the state of Florida. Learn more via the Florida Veterans Foundation website.
BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT BOARD:
The Martin County Business Development Board has created a centralized online resource, Martin County BIZHub, to help meet the ever-changing needs and interests of local businesses. It features announcements, updates, links to state and federal business loan programs, connections to small business, job and workforce development partners and more. Businesses can also call the BDB at (772) 221-1380 or email email@example.com.
In addition, businesses affected by COVID-19 are asked to complete the Business Damage Assessment Survey.
STIMULUS BREAKDOWN FOR SMALL BUSINESSES:
The stimulus breakdown for small businesses includes the funding available, the four policy initiatives included in the federal stimulus package and FAQs to help walk small business stakeholders through this process. View the stimulus breakdown here.
SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION (SBA) ECONOMIC INJURY DISASTER LOAN:
Small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture, and most private nonprofit organizations may apply for low-interest loans through the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Program. If your business has suffered substantial economic injury due to COVID-19, you may qualify for an EIDL.EIDLs provide working capital to help businesses survive until normal operations resume after a disaster. The SBA can provide up to $2 million to help meet financial obligations and operating expenses that could have been met had the disaster not occurred. For more information, visit the SBA website.
TOURISM, DINING, INDUSTRY:
The Martin County Office of Tourism & Marketing offers resources for our local tourism industry, resources for small businesses and more at their Discover Martin website.
DINING AT A DISTANCE:
We encourage you to support our local businesses by ordering from area restaurants that are offering take-out, delivery and curbside pickup services. For a list of restaurants offering amended services, visit Discover Martin's Dining at a Distance page.
Martin County Tax Collector: All Martin County Tax Collector locations are closed to the public until further notice. The Martin County Tax Collector’s Office would like to remind residents that many services, including payments for property and business taxes, can be handled online or by phone. For more information, please visit the Martin County Tax Collector's website.
- Emergency Order for COVID-19 Property Tax: The Florida Department of Revenue has extended the property tax payment due date from March 31 to April 15. Read more.
Martin County Clerk of the Court: The Martin County Clerk of the Court’s facilities are closed to walk-in visitors until further notice; however, essential services remain in place for protective injunctions, Baker and Marchman Acts, judicial waivers and Risk Protective Orders. Other services will be provided by phone or email and a drop box is available at the Courthouse Complex from 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. The Clerk announced that all jury trials are cancelled through April 17; limited court hearings will be held pursuant to court administrative orders. The Florida Court’s e-Filing Portal is fully operational for court case filings.
In addition, the Clerk would like to remind residents that many services and records are available online and that court fees and traffic tickets can be paid online or by phone. Also, E-notify is a great, free way to get reminders about court hearings. For more information, please visit the Martin County Clerk of the Court’s website.
In addition, the Clerk would like to remind residents that many services and records are available online and that court fees and traffic tickets can be paid online or by phone. Also, E-notify is a great, free way to get reminders about court hearings. For more information, please visit the Martin County Clerk of the Court's website.
Martin County Property Appraiser: The Martin County Property Appraiser’s Office is closed to walk-in traffic until further notice. We would like to remind property owners that many services can be done online, including: filing homestead exemption applications, tangible personal property extension requests, mailing address changes, real property ownership and sales search, and more. To access these online services, please visit the Martin County Property Appraiser’s website.
Martin County Supervisor of Elections: The Martin County Supervisor of Elections' Office is closed to walk-in traffic. If you would like to vote by mail in the upcoming primary and general elections, register to vote or update information, please visit the Martin County Supervisor of Elections website, call the office at (772) 288-5637, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Elections staff will be available to assist you. Spanish assistance is also available.
MARTIN COUNTY SCHOOLS:
The Martin County School District is coordinating with the Florida Department of Health in Martin County to monitor the spread of the disease. On March 30, the Florida Department of Education issued additional recommendation that schools will remain closed through May 1, 2020. Classes are scheduled to resume Monday, May 4, 2020.
For technical support for laptops for virtual learning, email MCSDLaptops@martinschools.org.
For the latest school information and updates, please visit the Martin County School District's website.
All AT&T consumer home internet wireline customers, as well as Fixed Wireless Internet, can use unlimited internet data. Additionally, AT&T will continue to offer internet access for qualifying limited income households at $10 a month through the Access from AT&T program. Eligibility for Access from AT&T has been expanded to households participating in the National School Lunch Program and Head Start. Visit the AT&T website for more information.
Xfinity WiFi Free for Everyone: Xfinity WiFi hotspots across the country will be available to anyone who needs them for free – including non-Xfinity internet subscribers. View a map of Xfinity WiFi hotspots.
Once at a hotspot, consumers should select the “xfinitywifi” network name in the list of available hotspots and then launch a browser.
For customers experiencing hardship as a result of COVID-19, FPL has resources available to help, and to the extent they are available, will continue to connect customers with resources from federal, state and local authorities.
For now, FPL is suspending disconnections at least through the end of March. For more information, visit the FPL website.
BARS AND NIGHTCLUBS:
Under the direction of Governor DeSantis, as of his order on March 17, all bars and nightclubs throughout Florida will close for the next 30 days. The Department of Business and Professional Regulation will be enforcing and providing further guidance.
RESTAURANTS AND FITNESS CENTERS:
Governor Ron DeSantis signed an order for the purpose of directing all restaurants and food establishments to suspend on-premises food and alcohol consumption for customers.
The listed establishments may, however, operate their kitchens for the purpose of providing delivery or take-out services; lifts the restriction that prohibits a specially licensed food service establishment from selling package sales of alcohol for delivery, take-out or consumption off-premises for restaurants; requires the closures of gymnasiums and fitness centers.