Residents who spoke at Monday’s meeting of the Kerr County Commissioners Court unanimously opposed the use of federal funding assistance under the American Rescue Plan Act, citing concerns it would be used to unduly enhance federal control over local affairs under the guise of helping locals deal with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Most categories of ARPA-eligible expenses must be related to COVID-19.
The county last Thursday issued a survey to solicit public input on what uses should be prioritized for ARPA funding. Choices included COVID-19 prevention in certain public places, medical expenses, capital investments or certain changes to public facilities related to COVID-19; other COVID-19 public health expenses such as those related to communications, information technology, law enforcement and EMS; aid to nonprofits; infrastructure related to clean water and broadband internet service. Government entities, area nonprofits and businesses would be eligible to receive ARPA funding from the county, according to a presentation available on the county’s website at https://www.co.kerr.tx.us/arpa/.