Maine Delegation Announce $892,586 to Reimburse Portland, Preble Street, and Jewish Community Alliance for Costs of Caring for Asylum Seekers

The funding, which was supported by Collins, King, Pingree, and Golden, was included in Bipartisan Border Supplemental Funding Package that was signed into law into law on July 1

The Portland family shelter received the second-largest award in the country


Washington, D.C.—U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King and Representatives Chellie Pingree and Jared Golden announced today that the City of Portland Family Shelter, Preble Street Resource Center, and the Jewish Community Alliance received a total of $892,586.  The funding was awarded through the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) Emergency Food and Shelter National Board Program (EFSP).


“When Maine experienced a surge of asylum seekers this summer, Portland, its surrounding communities, and many individuals and organizations pitched in to help meet the basic needs of these new arrivals,” said Senators Collins and King and Representatives Pingree and Golden.  “While Maine is a welcoming state, our citizens should not bear these costs alone.  We are pleased that this funding will help reimburse these organizations that compassionately provided humanitarian assistance.”


"I'd like to thank Senators Collins and King, Reps. Pingree and Golden, and Governor Mills, for their support in ensuring our application to FEMA was considered and ultimately approved," said Portland City Manager Jon Jennings. "Portland is a welcoming city and our City staff work tirelessly to provide emergency shelter for those who need it. This federal reimbursement will go a long way in relieving the impact on Portland taxpayers."  


Senator Collins and Representative Pingree, who serve on the Senate and House Appropriations Committees respectively, strongly advocated for the inclusion of $30 million for EFSP in the emergency supplemental appropriations bill that passed Congress at the end of June with the support of the entire delegation.  The funding was intended for communities across the country that were experiencing a surge in asylum seekers.  In July, the Maine delegation wrote to FEMA to urge the agency to distribute the grant assistance as directed by Congress.


The funding was allocated as follows:


  • $864,079 to the City of Portland Family Shelter (the second-largest grant recipient in the country);


  • $20,394 to Preble Street, and;


  • $8,113 to the Jewish Community Alliance.