San Mateo County’s Board of Supervisors on Tuesday allocated an additional $2 million to the county’s Immigrant Relief Fund, which provides financial assistance to immigrants during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The relief fund provides $1,000 grants to low-income, undocumented San Mateo County residents who may not qualify for federal benefits. The $2 million allocation came from the county’s Measure K funds.
John Sobrato, a real estate developer and founder of the Sobrato Organization, seeded the fund in July with a $5 million contribution. He challenged the board to match his contribution during an Oct. 6 board meeting.
The supervisors requested that an agenda item be added for their meeting Tuesday to allocate $2 million to the fund, in addition to the $2 million they initially allocated in July.
On Oct. 6, management analyst for the county Sophie Mintier reported that the fund had exhausted 96 percent of its funding.
To date, over 23,000 people have applied and 10,394 have been approved, according to Sobrato.
Tuesday’s allocation brings the board’s contribution to $4 million, in addition to the $5 million from Sobrato, and $4 million fundraised from private donors.
It is administered by the Legal Aid Society of San Mateo County and the Mission Asset Fund. For more information, visit https://missionassetfund.org/immigrant-families-grant-sm/.
On Tuesday, the board also allocated money from the county’s Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act fund.
Supervisors approved allocations of $3.5 million to expand internet and technology access for students, $2 million toward the Second Harvest of Silicon Valley food bank and $2.5 million to the Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center to assist small businesses in low-income communities.