SECTION 1. (a) There shall be established and set upon the books of the commonwealth a separated fund to be known as the COVID-19 Public Institutions of Higher Education Emergency Fund to be administered by the board of higher education.
(b) The purpose of the Fund shall be for financial assistance in the form of grants to public institutions of higher education, which consists of those segments set forth in section 5 of chapter 15A of the General Laws and are in high impact areas affected by the 2019 novel coronavirus, or COVID-19, outbreak. Such financial assistance shall include, but not be limited to, grants for: (i) loss of revenue; (ii) unexpected expenses, such as including providing increased safety and security measures, implementation of online or virtual classes, loss of dormitory, housing, meal, events revenue; or (iii) loss of contributions, grants or other financial assistance as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak.
(c)The purpose of the Fund will assist the public institutions of higher education to cover employees for lost wages, expanded sick time costs and other costs associated with their employment status as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak.
(d) There shall be credited to the Fund all amounts that are, by law, transferred or authorized to be transferred thereto or directed to be deposited therein, and all amounts received as gifts, grants or contributions for the purposes of the Fund. Amounts credited to the Fund shall not be subject to further appropriation and any money remaining in the Fund at the end of a fiscal year shall not revert to the General Fund.
SECTION 2. On the effective date of this act, the comptroller shall transfer $125,000,000 from the General Fund to the COVID-19 Public Institutions of Higher Education Emergency Fund established in section 1 for the purposes of carrying out this act.
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