Mercer County Commission discusses American Rescue Plan funding ideas

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PRINCETON, WV (WVNS) — The Mercer County Commissioners discussed how to go about spending their portion of the American Cares Act funding at their meeting Tuesday, January 11, 2022.

The three Mercer County Commissioners discussed how to proceed with applications, gaining public comments, and making plans on how to spend their portion of the American Rescue Plan funding.  Mercer County Commissioner Greg Puckett said he wants to spend the money with a long term plan in place.

“One of the main things we want to do with our American Rescue Plan funds is we want to make sure we allocate those in the right way and we want to make sure we have all the accountability up front,” Puckett said.

While there are time constraints on when the money needs to be allocated, Puckett said that deadline isn’t until 2026.  This extra time gives the county a chance to identify project funding.

“We’ll address it on the need as well making sure that we prioritize how we maybe able to match those funds and get more monies out of that project to where we have everybody working together,” Puckett said

Puckett added his goal is to have a 20-year shelf life on every dollar the county spends. He and the commission hope to spend the money on sewer and water projects, dilapidated housing issues, and infrastructure.

“We don’t want to waste this money, we want to leverage this money that way, you know, this may be a one time shot, we want to get the best bang for the buck anyway we can,” Puckett said.

Residents of Mercer County are encouraged to reach out to the commission in person, email, or social media to voice their concerns and opinions on what they think needs fixed in the county. In the coming weeks, the commission hopes to have a link on their website to a web portal for project proposals.

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