Once again, there was very minimal mention about ARPA funds at the Board of Commissioner’s meeting on Wednesday, May 18 and it wasn’t on the Thursday, May 19 agenda either.
I think the majority of the commissioners were just trying to appease the public by giving them a one hour forum and some public comments time last fall to present their ARPA requests and never had any intention of actually following through with any of those requests. What a waste of the public’s time and their time.
Yes, I’ve heard loud and clear Mr. Brodeur’s recent comments as to how the county is in dire financial straits and how some expenditures have been reduced. I don’t know that the public was made fully aware of the financial crisis or potential resolution, previously before ARPA $ ever came into the picture or during a sham public forum. Why build up hopes that were never going to see the light of day?
At a recent meeting it was explained the county is using the ARPA lost revenue excuse to shuffle funds around to cover major budget issues, other board identified expenditures and start funding the preservation of the courthouse.
After last month’s meeting, Mr. Boggs said it would be clearly articulated on board reports and the county website. But I have been unable to find any ARPA information on the website.
Owosso, Vernon Township and other local communities have had public input as they awaited final word as to how funds could be spent. At least they’ve been upfront with the public as they’ve adjusted their spending plans. Why is it so hard for the county to give a true picture of how ARPA funds are being spent and how next year’s allocation (if it remains available in the future – government easy come, easy go) will be spent?
Two final thoughts, not everyone in this county has a computer and internet service for information at their fingertips.
In addition, there was not enough $$$ being doled out for the hundreds of small businesses in this state to survive no matter what some on the board may think. To qualify for the $$$ was an arduous task when they were already struggling and continue to struggle today.
Paula Brooks, Durand Area Resident