Prime recipients receive money directly from the federal government. They may then pay some of the money to other entities for goods or services. These entities are sub-recipients.
For example, the Department of the Treasury made a direct payment of $862 million from the Coronavirus Relief Fund (CRF) to the Executive Office of the State of Hawaii – the prime recipient. The Executive Office of the State of Hawaii then gave $67 million to the County of Maui for COVID-19 response efforts, making the county the sub-recipient.
Sub-recipient data lets the public see how local communities are spending the pandemic relief they received. However, sometimes award descriptions aren’t very clear so seeing exactly how the money was spent is difficult. Read our report on some of the dead ends in pandemic relief data.
Not every pandemic relief program has sub-recipients. The Restaurant Revitalization Fund only has prime recipients – the restaurants that received direct payments from the Small Business Administration.
Prime and sub-recipient entities cover a broad range of organizations, including: for-profit companies, universities, state, local, territorial, or Tribal governments, individuals, and non-profits.