Benton County begins planning process of allocating $54 million in American Rescue Plan funds

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BENTON COUNTY, Ark. (KNWA/FOX24) — Benton County leaders are starting to plan how they will allocate $54 million in American Rescue Plan funding.

The county is looking to put the money towards several categories including public health and economic recovery, county employees, criminal justice, county facilities and infrastructure.

They are also looking to make sure they invest in underserved communities in Benton County such as the Marshallese and Latino communities.

The county Quorum Court is acting as the American Rescue Plan Committee. It has already received $27 million of the funds, and will receive the second half next year.

Judge Barry Moehring said members are in a unique position to do a lot of good with so much money.

“We want to be very transparent, very open to public involvement, we want to make the very best decisions about how to allocate these dollars for the citizens of Benton County, he said.

The committee hosted its first meeting on public health and economic recovery on Monday. It held its meeting on county employees on Tuesday. The next meeting will be on September 14 where they will discuss infrastructure. That includes water, sewers and broadband.

Judge Moehring said they will be launching a website soon where people will be able to send proposals to receive funding.

The committee will host two meetings in September. On the 9th it will discuss criminal justice, and on the 14th it will discuss county facilities. All meetings are happening in the Quorum Courtroom in person, and virtually through zoom.

Click here to find out how much money other counties around the nation are getting.

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