WCA member households eligible for $2,000 in pandemic aid

Tribal members of the Wrangell Cooperative Association are eligible to receive funding from another round of COVID-19 federal pandemic relief under the American Rescue Plan Act.

The WCA is accepting applications through Dec. 16 to distribute $2,000 per member household to help with things like fuel, groceries and utilities.

“Wrangell Cooperative Association realized this can be a tough time of year for people and wanted to offer some assistance to our tribal citizens,” said Esther Reese, WCA tribal administrator.

“All WCA members must fill out a form certifying there have been no changes to their household information” since the last relief aid distribution, the WCA said in its information sheet.

Once an application is approved, members can choose $2,000 in assistance in any combination of $1,000 in fuel assistance from Petro Marine for household heating or boat fuel; $1,000 in fuel assistance ($500 each at L&M and Alpine gas stations) for vehicle and boat fuel; $1,000 in utility assistance; and $1,000 in grocery assistance ($500 each at Wrangell IGA or City Market).

Or households can choose to receive the $2,000 in a single category. Members must reside in Wrangell to receive the assistance.

“These distributions are household-based, so a few members may live in the same household and fall under one application,” said Alex Angerman, CARES Act coordinator for WCA.

Applications can be obtained by emailing Angerman at carescoord.wca@gmail.com, visiting the WCA website at wcatribe.org, or picking one up at the porch of the WCA office from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, at 1002 Zimovia Highway (across from Alpine Mini Mart). Applications can be returned via the email address or dropped off at the porch.

There are an estimated 504 WCA members residing in Wrangell and $4.7 million in relief aid has been distributed since the federal funded community assistance program started.

This is the fifth round of relief funding distributed by the tribal council, which includes subsistence community assistance, Angerman said. This is the second round of funding under the 2021 American Rescue Plan Act. Previous pandemic relief payments were funded through the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs and 2020 CARES Act.

Angerman said the latest round of relief funding is budgeted at $660,000.


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