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July 23, 2020

Pennsylvania offers time sensitive opportunity for employee hazard pay grants for COVID-19

The Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development has announced a COVID-19 hazard pay grant program to help employers provide hazard pay to employees in life-sustaining occupations during the COVID-19 emergency. Hazard pay means additional wages paid to employees for performing hazardous duty or work involving physical hardship in connection with COVID-19.

Employers must act quickly

Applications will be accepted between July 16, 2020, and July 31, 2020, leaving employers a short time to take advantage of this program.

How it works

Employers may submit applications for up to $1,200 per eligible full-time equivalent (FTE) employee. The hazard pay must be paid to the eligible employee over the 10-week period of August 16, 2020 through October 24, 2020 as a $3/hour hazard pay increase to their regular hourly pay rate.

The program limits hazard-pay grants to 500 eligible full-time equivalent employees per location ($600,000 maximum grant per location). No employer may receive more than $3 million.

Grant funds may be used for hazard pay for direct, full-time and part-time employees earning less than $20/hour, excluding fringe benefits and overtime. Funds may only be used to pay hazard pay for eligible employees for the 10-week period from August 16, 2020 through October 24, 2020.


Businesses, healthcare non-profits, public transportation agencies, and certified economic development organizations may apply for funding for employers located and operating in Pennsylvania within one of the following eligible industries:

  • Healthcare and social assistance
  • Food manufacturing
  • Food retail facilities
  • Transit and group passenger transportation
  • Security services for eligible industries listed above and commercial industries that were not closed as a result of the Governor's Business Closure Order
  • Janitorial services to buildings and dwellings

How to apply

Applications must be submitted through the Electronic Single Application (ESA). For any questions, contact DCED Customer Service by calling +1 866 466 3972 or by email at

For more information, download the program guidelines here.


Contact Information
For additional information concerning this Alert, please contact:
Workforce Tax Services - Employment Tax Advisory Services
   • Kenneth Hausser (
   • Debera Salam (
   • Kristie Lowery (
   • Peter Berard (


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