Warren County Supervisors continue American Rescue Plan Act discussions
Published 3:15 pm Tuesday, September 14, 2021
The Warren County Board of Supervisors received $8.8 million from ARPA (American Rescue Plan Act) and during its work session on Monday, they continued discussing how they could determine the best use for these funds.
The board has already determined some line items including repairs to the Warren County Health Department since it is a vaccination site that will need to be funded, but to hear proposals from their constituents, they are looking at holding district forums.
The dates and locations have not yet been determined and the board is also still in the process of developing the criteria that will be needed to be included for a request.
ARPA funds must be obligated by Dec. 31, 2024, and spent By Dec. 31, 2026.
The county board will be responsible for money distributed and all the funds must be accounted for, county administrator Loretta Brantley said.
During a seminar Brantley and District 3 Supervisor Shawn Jackson attended, Brantley said, it had been stressed the ARPA funding received for the county was the responsibility of the board even after the money is allotted.
“We can’t lose responsibility,” Brantley said.
To assist in the accounting, District 4 Supervisor Dr. Jeff Holland suggested hiring someone to manage the funds.
“I’m getting emails and calls from reputable people telling us we need a management company to run everything for us for ARPA,” Holland said.
District 5 Supervisor Kelle Barfield said she was not in favor of hiring a company.
Therefore, it was suggested the board hire one person with expertise in excel to oversee the ARPA funds.
Audits will be conducted for any expenditures exceeding $75,000.
In June the Culkin Water District association had asked the board for more than $8 million to provide consistency, sustainability and redundancy to its customers.
Holland said they have now come back and requested funds to match what they could receive from the state.
“The state has its own ARPA money, and the water district has apparently gone to the state with much the same proposal as they brought to us,” Holland said.
To receive any funding from the state, Holland said, the water district must first get matching local dollars.
During the seminar Brantley attended, she said, it had been specifically stated, that if they were to donate to a water district it had to be in the form of a grant.
“This is a whole other process,” Brantley said, than money just being allocated per a request.