ARPA money before council tonight

M.P. Regan
Tuesday, September 20, 2022

The remainder of the City of Dillon’s ARPA funds could be distributed ASAP—i.e. by the end of tonight’s Dillon City Council meeting.

The city’s ARPA (American Rescue Plan Act) Committee consisting of local citizens and city councilpersons recommended at its last meeting that the city council allocate slightly more than the just sliglhtly over $653,000 remaining the city’s ARPA kitty.

At its Sept. 14 meeting, the ARPA committee voted unanimously to recommend that the city council send $15,000 to the local wood bank for the purchase of a skid steer and $650,000 of the city’s remaining ARPA funds go toward the purchase of a new fire engine.

Those $665,000 would more than eat up the $653.726.23 the city has left to allocate in ARPA funds from payments in 2021 and 2022 the city received in the federal pandemic relief funds through the state that totaled just shy of $1.102 million.

Previous allocations of those funds sent just over $208,000 to the fire department for the purchase of SCBA breathing devices, around $34,000 to the police department for body cams, and just over $2,500 for new computers for the city attorney’s office.

The local Senior Center got approved for just under $175,000 for a kitchen remodel in April, when the police department received $16,000 for the WatchGuard program, the local food bank netted $4,000 for a new refrigeration unit and the Parks Department was allocated up to $9,600 for a new UV unit to purify water.

The final recommendations to the city council came through a trio of ARPA Committee meetings over the past month.

The committee also considered a request from some downtown businesses for relief for the steep decline in revenue they experienced over the past year due to the disruption of streets caused by the waterline replacement project.

The committee also considered requests for funds for improvements for Jaycee Park, Ibeyville Park and the parking lot just west of Montana Street downtown.

If a majority of the city council votes to approve of the recommendations tonight, it will essentially wrap up the city’s multi-year dance with more than a million dollars in ARPA funds and all the groups looking to cut in on the dance.