Springfield City Council to hear first reading of ordinances to allocate ARPA funds

Springfield City Council will meet Monday night and one of the items on the agenda is the first reading to allocate funds from the American Rescue Plan.
Published: Jul. 11, 2022 at 5:06 AM CDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) -Springfield City Council will meet Monday night and one of the items on the agenda is the first reading to allocate funds from the American Rescue Plan.

The city received more than 50 funding requests for funding through the American Rescue plan. The review committee narrowed the list down to 16 projects totaling more than $20 million.

The recommended projects are

Renew Jordan Creek (Stormwater project) $500,000

Cooper/Killian Park Projects

Cooper Soccer Complex Turf and Cooper Baseball & Killian Softball Upgrades

Total: $7,300,000

Art Museum Education Wing: $3,000,000

Ozark Greenways: Chadwick Flyer Trail Development $3,000,000

Historic City Hall Renovation $4,000,000

City-Wide Housing Study $500,000

MSU request for funding for Grand St. underpass $750,000

Restore SGF project $1,000,000

Boys & Girls Club/FosterAdopt Connect Teen Center $2,000,000

Housing/Homeless Projects Set Aside (Additional to $5.3 million in CDBG-ARPA Funds) $7,000,000

Family Connects Program $650,000

Discovery Center $50,000

Ozark Empire Fair Youth Agricultural Education Center $250,000

Burrell 24/7 Mental Health Help Hotline $100,000

Springfield-Greene County Library District (Library Center Community Space, Midtown Carnegie and Library Station Renovations) $500,000

OTC request for Airframe & Powerplant Maintenance facility $750,000

“So this was a chance for us to invest in the community not only to help us through the remainder of the pandemic at the time but even more importantly, I think to help with the recovery and moving forward, coming out of the pandemic,” said Councilman and Mayor Pro Tem Matthew Simpson. “We recognize that this was a probably once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to invest in our community.”

ARPA is a $1.9 trillion federal aid package passed by Congress in March 2021 to provide financial aid to families, governments, businesses, schools, nonprofits and others impacted by the pandemic. Of that $1.9 trillion, $350 billion is going to state and local governments as part of the Fiscal Recovery Fund.

“When they identify the top kind of public priority projects that are one-time projects largely capital projects we can invest this money in and have the ability to have the organizations working on those projects with the capacity to pay for operations moving forward,” said Simpson. We’re not just funding a program that will go away when this money goes away because it’s not a recurring funding source.”

The City narrowed the list down to 16 projects that are sustainable and will not need continuous funding.

“We received far more project requests than we had funding for and that was the most difficult part of this process is knowing that there are a lot of good ideas for how to spend this money,” said Simpson.

The remainder of the funds were allocated back in August. A portion went to the Springfield-Greene County Health Department for continuing COVID-19 services. In January, the council approved the use of ARPA dollars for retention pay for all full-time Fire Department, Police Department, and Health Department staff. To see the official city news release CLICK HERE.

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