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  • Bill Raines

Lawrence County Establishes Ordinance for American Rescue Act Funds and Purpose of those Funds

LAWRENCE COUNTY - OCTOBER 28, 2022 - Lawrence County Commissioners approved a ordinance to establish a fund and designate the purpose for the distribution of ARPA Funds.

Lawrence County Commissioners Wally Branham, President Rodney Fish, and Dustin Gabhart

There were two different COVID relief projects that the federal government distributed to state and local governments throughout the United States.

The first was CARES Act Funds in which Lawrence County received $1.4 Million which was distributed to non-profits, school corporations, stipends for county employees and Lawrence County Sheriff's Department for the purchase of three police cars.

The second is coming from the American Rescue Fund Act to which the county will receive a total of $8.8 Million. At this time, the county is receiving bids to bring broadband to rural area of the county. No other projects were mentioned by the Lawrence County Commissioners at this time.

Prior to the primary election Lawrence County Commissioner Rodney Fish, and Dustin Gabhart told the local volunteer fire departments that they support their efforts and will be finding a way to help support those departments during a county council meeting.

Despite responding to many emergencies' medical calls throughout the COVID pandemic and are still responding to COVID related emergency medical calls; the local volunteer fire departments still have not received any kind of compensation from county government for their services.

In many cases the volunteer firefighters were quarantined by Lawrence County Health Department when the COVID pandemic first started. The volunteer firefighters had to miss work from their regular paying jobs.

The recommendations and bids are expected to be opened at a later time for the broadband project.

The county council did not have any say in how the CARES Act Funds will be distributed, however by new rules the county council must approve any fund disbursals of the ARPA funds.

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