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Carroll County Times
Carroll County News

Carroll County residents, here’s where your federal recovery funds are going

Carroll County will use about half of the $32.7 million it received from the Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds program, part of President Biden’s American Rescue Plan, to fund five broadband infrastructure projects, already approved for the county.

The county received $32,718,855 from the COVID-19 stimulus package in two allocations. About half of the funds were received in May 2021 and the remainder arrived in May 2022. The money is intended to speed up the country’s recovery from the economic and health effects of the pandemic.

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Carroll County has allocated all of the funds it received, according to Deborah Standiford, grants manager for Carroll County government.

The Board of Carroll County Commissioners received a briefing Thursday on the status of several allocated projects.

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The county government allocated $17.8 million to IT projects, most of which are currently in the bidding process. Of that, $11.9 million is slated for broadband connections for unserved or underserved residences in the county. Additional state broadband grants have been awarded to Carroll County, Standiford said, and the county anticipates applying for more grants.

A page on the county’s website will be created soon to share information about areas that will receive broadband and a timeline for those connections, Standiford said Thursday.

About $10.5 million has been allocated to public works projects, with $3.5 million of that for HVAC projects throughout the county, and $3.5 million toward a project at the Hampstead wastewater treatment plant. Another $2.2 million of those funds is slated for water improvement projects in Westminster, Manchester and Union Bridge.

Work includes advanced water treatment in Westminster ($1.5 million), water main replacement and service connections in Manchester ($520,252) and water line repairs in Union Bridge ($157,606), according to a chart presented at the Thursday meeting.

Commissioners voted 4-1 to allocate the funds to the three projects. Commissioner Eric Bouchat was the lone dissenting vote; he did not give a reason for his vote. Bouchat represents District 4, which includes the southwestern portion of Carroll County. It includes the towns of Union Bridge, New Windsor and Mount Airy.

Commissioner’s President Ed Rothstein, who represents District 5, said in a news release that the approved projects will help with the county’s long-term recovery from the pandemic, “especially on transformational projects like water and broadband infrastructure that will have long-term positive impacts.”

A presentation from the county’s grants office, detailing where all the grant money has been allocated, is available on the county’s website.


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