Local governments planning numerous federally funded projects
Federal funding continues to flow, and it is available now to government officials throughout the country. Just weeks ago, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced yet another $272 million that is available for rural drinking water and wastewater infrastructure projects. USDA will finance 114 projects through the Water and Waste Disposal Loan and Grant Program.
Some of the first recipients include:
- The village of Baldwin, Wisconsin, will use its $14.5 million loan and $3.6 million grant to replace its wastewater treatment plant.
- The city of Homedale, Idaho, will use a $7.9 million loan and a $2.1 million grant to repair, renovate, and modernize its wastewater treatment system.
- Bryson City, North Carolina, will spend its $6.6 million loan and $1.7 million grant to repair and replace deteriorated components of its wastewater collection system.
- Shelby County, Ohio, will use its $6.1 million loan and $5.2 million grant to expand the Lake Loramie Wastewater Treatment Plant.
- Northumberland, New Hampshire, will use its $5.1 million loan and $1.7 million grant to replace water and sewer mains.
The state’s Public Service Commission recently announced recipients of Broadband Access Grants funded through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). A total of $99.9 million is available for 83 broadband projects. This funding is allocated to 40 counties and three tribal lands. The grant funding provides matching funds of approximately $102 million.
DeKalb County will use some of its $148 million in ARPA funding to expand and rehabilitate community parks. Twenty parks are targeted for construction to repair stormwater infrastructure. The work will include dam restoration, detention pond improvements, and restoration of stream banks.
The city of Greenville will use $24.7 million of its ARPA funding for projects to enhance recreation amenities. Plans include renovation of the Guy Smith Stadium and improvements to the Town Common. A second baseball field will be built at Thomas Foreman Park, and a trail connecting the Town Common to the soon-to-open Wildwood Park is under consideration.
Allentown will use $28.7 million in ARPA funding to boost other sources of revenue for various projects. Approximately $32.6 million will be spent on infrastructure. Another $8.2 million is slated for broadband expansion, $7.2 million is earmarked for water filters, and $6.3 million will be used for water main replacements. The city’s storm sewers will receive funding for improvements that total $5 million.
Reading will use $41 million of its $61 million ARPA funding for projects such as:
- $4 million for upgrades at the Marion Fire Station.
- $3 million for City Hall heating, ventilation, and air conditioning improvements.
- $1.3 million for apparatus replacements at the city.
- $2 million for recreational facilities.
- $3 million for dam remediation.
- $3 million for park upgrades.
- $2 million for sidewalk repair.
The city of Hammond is ready to spend $38 million of its $51.39 million ARPA funding. Plans include $1.3 million for software and cybersecurity updates, $3.5 million for a new pedestrian bridge, $3.6 million for another bridge near the intersection of Kennedy Avenue and 169th Street, $1 million for repair to the Columbia Avenue water tank, $3.5 million for a new fire station, and $4 million for lead remediation in the soil of the Robertsdale area.
Escondido received $38.8 million in ARPA funding, and city leaders will use $9.3 million for investments in parks and public recreation areas. More than $5 million will help fund an aquatics center, and another project is designed to make sidewalk repairs and connect the Escondido Creek Trail to access points in the community.
Salinas County will spend $51 million of its COVID relief funds on these projects:
- $11.5 million for municipal projects.
- City Hall upgrades – $5 million.
- Hebbron Family Center renovation -$1.5 million.
- Fire station facility modernization – $3 million.
- Playground structures – $2 million.
- $12 million for public infrastructure.
- Sidewalk repairs – $6 million.
- Street repair/ traffic safety – $6 million.
- $15.5 million for water and sewer projects.
- Sewer system improvement – $4.6 million.
- Gabilan Creek silt removal – $500,000.
- Natividad Creek silt removal – $1.5 million.
- Stormwater master plan – $800,000.
- Park irrigation upgrades: $5 million.
- Stormwater green infrastructure – $3 million.
Baton Rouge will use $73 million of ARPA funding for initiatives in East Baton Rouge Parish that include:
- $20 million for drainage improvements.
- $14.2 million for law enforcement capital projects such as $8 million to replace aging police vehicles and $1.8 million for technology upgrades.
- $9.6 million for fire department equipment.
- $5.6 million for channel clearing.
- $5 million for Jones Creek Watershed drainage improvements.
- $4 million for HVAC upgrades at several public facilities.
The city of Toledo introduced its Toledo Recovery Plan that outlines spending plans for $180 million in federal funding. Some highlights include:
- $12 million for playgrounds, parks, and city golf courses.
- $10 million to replace every private lead service line citywide at no cost to homeowners.
Commissioners in Bernalillo County approved an allocation of $131 million in ARPA funding, with $74.6 million earmarked for infrastructure projects and $57.3 million tagged for non-infrastructure projects. The infrastructure projects include:
- $53.8 million for joint sewer and water projects with the Albuquerque/Bernalillo County Water Authority.
- $10.8 million for sewer and water projects within Bernalillo County lines.
- $10 million for broadband and fiber optic projects in all five commission districts.
This overview provides a glimpse of how local officials are beginning to use some of the new federal funding. Without a doubt, it will be a busy year for companies that provide equipment and services essential to these types of projects.