Erie County unveiled their plans to allocate the $89.2 million dollars, or $96.95 per citizen, provided to the county under the American Rescue Fund Act. County Administrator Mark Poloncarz and Representative Brian Higgins are among the first in Western New York to lay out a plan to the public, deemed the RENEW Plan(Reinvest in Erie’s Neighborhoods and Employ our Workforce.)
Allegany County’s cut from the federal relief is much less at $9 million but almost double per citizen at $195.65. With such a investment in the public, interest in how the county is going to spend the money is high. We asked county administrator Carissa Knapp where we stand as a county concerning this relief payment:
” Counties receive half of their ARP monies this year and the other half next year and have until 12/31/2024 to obligate the money (sign contracts/initiate projects) and until 12/31/2026 to complete projects/expend the funds.
We received the first half of $4,476,318 on 5/20/21.
The ARP funds are not unrestricted and there is only preliminary federal guidance for their use. As part of the planning process, we’ve hired an accounting firm, Drescher & Malecki, LLP to provide consulting and continuous auditing of the ARP funds to ensure we’re in compliance with the federal guidelines and regulations.
We all have a wish list of projects that ARP funds could help make a reality. Whether we initiate one or two larger scale projects or a series of small investments, our goal isn’t to spend the ARP funds as quick as possible. Instead, our goal is to spend the money in the best way possible and we plan to take some time to work with the Board, county offices, and our consultant accountants to help figure out what that is.”
Check back with the Wellsville Sun for more on how Allegany County will plan for and spend this historic economic relief: