BECKLEY, WV (WVNS) — Local county governments will soon receive millions of dollars as a part of the American Rescue Plan. Raleigh County commissioner Dave Tolliver said Raleigh County will receive $14 million.
Tolliver said the money has to be spent on projects that aim to help water, sewer, and broadband. But water will not be a priority in their plan because it is not the greatest need.
“Right now, we have 97 percent of people in Raleigh County have public water,” Tolliver said.
There is one sewer project the commissioners made a priority once they learned about this money.
“From Piney View Grade School, all the way out to Batoff Mountain. This one project is priority to commissioners,” Tolliver said.
But commissioners said their main priority will be broadband in the county. After this last year, Tolliver said commissioners realized just how big of a need there is for reliable internet for people in the county.
“For these kids so they can get it at home instead of driving somewhere to get to a hotspot so they can do their homework,” Tolliver explained.
Commissioners started a broadband committee to help decide the best way to spend this money. That committee decided on a loop project.
“Loop system is a system that will completely cover five or six counties in southern West Virginia,” Tolliver said.
This project will cost $1.6 million of the federal money. Commissioners said they will meet with the state treasurer to get more guidance on how to spend the rest of the funding. Tolliver said projects must be started within the next four years in order to receive funding from this bill.