Guidehouse Supports State of South Carolina with COVID Relief Grant Management

Program helped to maximize the allocation of CARES Act funding

Solution

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Challenge

The State of South Carolina received approximately $1.9 billion from the U.S. Department of the Treasury via the CARES Act through the Coronavirus Relief Fund. The CARES Act requires that the payments from the Coronavirus Relief Fund only be used to cover expenses that are necessary expenditures incurred due to COVID-19, were not accounted for in the State’s budget, and were incurred during the period of March 1, 2020 - December 31, 2021. South Carolina engaged Guidehouse to support the State to allocate the funds, develop the funding programs, and administer the funding to support its COVID-19 response and recovery efforts.

Solution

To maximize the State’s allocation of the CARES Act funding, Guidehouse identified funding and eligibility requirements and developed strategies for the State’s response using a current state assessment and prioritization evaluation based on funding. The team established processes, policies, and procedures for the end-to-end grants management process that then became business requirements for a tech-enabled grants management platform that will lead to countless efficiencies for years to come. Guidehouse configured, deployed, socialized, and continue to iterate on a Salesforce solution to enable these processes. This system has facilitated the tracking, management, monitoring, and reporting of expenditures and disbursements. Guidehouse staffed a large team that is actively reviewing thousands of reimbursement requests and monitoring for risk (including fraud), accuracy, and fidelity to the State’s interpretation of requirements for disbursal of CARES Act funds. They assess eligibility of expenses, answer questions about eligibility and requirements, and confirm duplication-of-benefits issues between CARES Act and FEMA PA funding for hundreds of millions of dollars of funds. 

Impact

Guidehouse’s work helped the State develop programs and disburse 95% of the program funds by December 30, 2020. As a result, the State has been able to quickly and effectively disburse federal funding aligned to the State government’s priorities. A sample of project outcomes is included below:

  • Implemented a grants management system that decreased application turnaround time and facilitated the payment of millions of dollars to applicants.
  • Assisted with multiple process redesigns that streamlined execution and brought clarity to day-to-day process activities.
  • Provided data-driven recommendations and insights on deployment of disaster recovery funds.
  • Transformed the process for disbursing applicant payments by introducing a project management role and automating key steps in the process.

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