Constant dollars

SC > GSA Business Counties ARPA Shortlist

This story first appeared in the April 4 print edition of the GSA Business Report:

Beating out Charleston and Richland counties, Greenville took the lead in ARPA funding allocations in 2021 with nearly $101.7 million.

The competition wasn’t even close with Richland County trailing with $80,756,312 in American Rescue Plan Act funds and Charleston County in third with $79,910,793, according to the US Treasury Department. . Spartanburg County was also in contention for the top five ARPA budgets at $62,114,487, just behind Horry County at $68,776,083.

Here’s where the GSA plans to spend that money:

Greenville County: $101,691,896

Greenville County estimated its revenue had reached nearly $31.4 million from the start of the COVID-19 pandemic through Aug. 31 of last year.

As a result, the largest portion of the county’s $101 million allocation will go to the county’s general fund in lieu of revenue, which can be used at the county’s discretion, according to county spokesman Bob Mihalic.

Earlier this year, Mihalic said that figure would total about $32 million, followed by $10 million for affordable housing. Conversations and interviews with community partners were underway to determine other COVID-19 related needs across the county.

“Residents have lost lives, jobs, income, homes, education opportunities and more as our local government has provided reliable and consistent services throughout this difficult time,” the plan said. Greenville County stimulus package, written in August. “However, all of this comes at a cost.”

According to Mihalic, the Greenville County Redevelopment Authority is leading a plan to preserve and create affordable housing. This plan will be presented to the County Council once completed.

Spartanburg County: $62,114,487

On March 3, Spartanburg County Council passed an ordinance directing staff to present proposals for ARPA-funded projects, first to council members and then at a public hearing.

Two weeks later, the first project was under discussion: a $4.5 million high-speed broadband extension to between 3,500 and 4,000 unserved and underserved residences and businesses in the county, according to a resolution of the advice.

The 300-mile expansion is expected to bring speeds of 100/20 Mbps to areas designated by SC’s office of regulatory personnel, including the southern and northwest regions of the county, according to the county administrator, Cole Alverson. Projections indicate that the cost of cabling in each building should cost between $1,000 and $1,100.

The county is considering underserved neighborhoods in the Reidville, Stone Station-Cross Anchor, Gowensville, Fingerville and Pacolet areas for the deployment, which Alverson said will be subsidized.

“The way we have approved and seen work in other communities is that we would seek through a request for proposals (RFP), a partnered utility that would actually do the rollout, and we would seek a funding partnership where they would have private dollars put into the product, and then the county would subsidize through its $4.5 million, the equivalent of something like $1,000 to $1,100 per pass,” he said. he declares.

Alverson also expects the $10 million earmarked for revenue recovery from the first $31 million to be used for road and bridge projects, as well as strategic water and sewer construction.

“And then they also asked us to spend time working with partners to develop a package around supporting small businesses and minorities,” he told GSA Business Report. “And so we’re really doing groundwork there to come up with new strategies and new opportunities that we think the board might be interested in pursuing.”

Anderson County: $39,344,517

Anderson County Administrator Rusty Burns called ARPA a “god-given” fund during the pandemic.

The funds help fill the revenue gap and kick-start infrastructure projects that “we might not have been able to access”, he said.

Many of these projects are on the verge of leaving the track. Others are in the process of being tendered. Most extend sewer infrastructure to areas the county expects to be hotspots for current and future growth.

“Exit 14 comes to mind, which is an exit on the freeway [85]”said Burns as he surveyed Lake Hartwell and Green Pond

Landing in preparation for the Bassmaster Classic. “This is truly one of the main gateways to Lake Hartwell in Anderson.”

Another project underway is a joint water treatment plant with the Town of Pendleton and the Town of Clemson. The leftovers will be used to bolster Upcountry Fiber’s $15 million, 2,800-mile broadband expansion in Anderson’s low-access enclaves.

“So a lot of our money is going to things that will benefit the county for years to come,” he said.

The county also set aside hazardous duty pay for county employees or essential workers, and expanded support for the Anderson Free Clinic and Anderson Interfaith Ministries drive-thru food delivery system.

Contact Molly Hulsey at 864-720-1223.