Plans underway for Covid-19 relief funds in Jackson County

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JACKSON COUNTY, Mich. (WLNS) – Jackson County will receive nearly 31 million dollars by the end of 2022. It’s part of the Covid-19 American Rescue Plan.

“There are needs out there right now that are pressing and we are trying to spend the money as quickly as possible,” said Jackson County Administrator, Michael Overton.

Right now, leaders say the priority is infrastructure repairs to keep county buildings up and running.
This includes things like roof replacements, tower building repairs, as well as upgrades to HVAC and security systems.

“We believe that by maintaining the structures that we can continue to maintain the ability to provide the services,” said Overton.

Many people in the community came out today to make sure their voices were heard. People like Pegg Clevenger. She says there hasn’t been enough opportunity for public input.

“I wanted to see our county take a more helpful approach to individuals in need because of Covid instead of repairing infrastructure,” said Clevenger.

Adding, she wants an added emphasis on broadband enhancements to help people get better access to services right now.

“There are people who could probably get access to funding and they don’t know about it.”

Administrators admit it’s a complex process with certain funds only available for certain areas, but they say nothing is finalized yet.

“Every item on our list will be researched and gone to bid if necessary and we will come to the county commissioners. They will debate it and vote it up or down. It’s just that simple,” said Overton.

The deadline to spend the money is not until 2026, but the county says they hope to put it to use much sooner.

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