Merced Co. approves $34.7 million in spending for American Rescue. Here’s where it’s heading.

Merced County has authorized the master plan for how to spend its latest round of COVID-19 stimulus funds.

On Tuesday, the Merced County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved the use of $53.9 million received from the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA) for income replacement.

The county held a final public hearing before allocating the funds, reviewing approximately 10,000 survey responses for public comment and giving the public the opportunity to address council in person before voting.

The council previously allocated $9.5 million of its total to the following three categories:

  • COVID-19 support: $300,000
  • Community facilities: $6.7 million
  • Flood control/water: $2.5 million

With $44.5 million remaining to be distributed, the board approved staff’s recommendation to allocate $34.7 million, leaving nearly $10 million free for future projects.

The board approved the following allocation, totaling $34.7 million:

homeless service

The board approved $1 million in the 2022-23 fiscal year budget for homeless navigation center operations and county-funded emergency shelter projects, as well as $1 million for the same projects in the next fiscal year.

COVID-19 support

ARPA funds for COVID-19 support include a 0,000 reimbursement for COVID-19 and ARPA outreach expenses in the 2021-22 budget.

The remaining $350,000 will be used for COVID-19 screening and vaccination activities in the 2022-2023 budget.

Flood Control/Water

The $4.7 million in this category will all be allocated in the 2022-23 budget to the Black Rascal flood control project.

Roads – $10 million

The council has approved $10 million for road reconstruction and resurfacing projects, which will be distributed based on the mileage of roads traveled by district to ensure the money is used on the roads people use most.

public safety

The county’s public safety functions received a $6.5 million allocation for the 2022-23 budget.

Community facilities projects – $11 million

Public facility upgrade projects include the following projects for HVAC systems, libraries, parks and rooftops:

  • CVC: Atwater Veterans Hall – $166,250
  • CVC: Elderly Delhi – $50,000
  • CVC: Gustine Veterans Hall – $141,250
  • HVAC: Hilmar Community Hall – $140,000
  • CVC: Livingston Veterans Hall – $100,000
  • CVC: Los Banos Veterans Hall – $100,000
  • CVC: County Administration Building – $7 million
  • CVC: Merced Library – $1.8 million
  • Library: Atwater Public Services Counter – $25,000
  • Library: Gustine Public Service Counter – $25,000
  • Library: Construction of the Hoffman Teen Center – $100,000
  • Parks: Delhi Shattack Park Improvements – $150,000
  • Parks: Purchase of Delhi Parkland – $400,000
  • Roof: Atwater Library – $291,000
  • Roof: The Great Hall of Veterans – $235,000
  • Roof: Old Courthouse Museum – $336,000

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