Warren expected to spend ARP funds on road projects | News, Sports, Jobs

WARREN — City Council plans to vote today to allocate $63,100 of each of its $500,000 in U.S. bailout funding to ensure the city can complete three road projects that may be delayed due to the surge inflationary commodity prices.

The projects are the Restoration Avenue Bridge Restoration, the 2022 City Roads Contract, and the 2022 Ohio Public Works Commission/Community Development Block Grant road projects.

Last week, board members agreed in principle that some of the ARP money they control will be used for projects.

The Reserve Avenue Bridge upgrade has a projected cost of $2.3 million and a budget of nearly $1.7 million, meaning the city must provide an additional $637,900. The cost of the OPWC/CDBG Roads 2022 project submission is approximately $1.4 million, but its budget is $1.3 million, leaving a balance of $130,484 to fund.

The city’s original estimate for the 2022 urban road project was $2.6 million. However, due to rising costs, the project is now expected to cost $630,000 more. The lowest bid was $3.2 million.

The vote is set for 4:30 p.m. today in Warren’s council chambers.

It will allow the city to appropriate the funds, including the combined $631,000 from each council member’s ARP stipend, as well as $150,000 from community development for OPWC/CDBG road projects and $300,000 from the city’s general fund for the Western Reserve. Bridge project.


The Council’s legislative committee will meet at 5 p.m. Wednesday to hear more about the 52 projects that community organizations have proposed to the administration for a portion of the $28.6 million Warren received in ARP funding.

The city has already spent $80,256 on projects, including $200,000 for business and construction grants; $195,966 to repair the fountain in Courthouse Square; and $132,250 for the Packard Music Hall roof.

He charged, but did not pay, $3.9 million for projects including $1.01 million for snowplows for the city’s operations department; $1 million for sidewalk repairs; $800,000 for business and building grants; $595,439 for a fire truck; and $99,978 for two Ford F-250 trucks.

The city still has $8.6 million in suggested projects that have not been funded but are considering, including a $1 million match for brownfield improvements and demolition, and $1.3 million in dollars for the heating and cooling of the government services building.

Councilor Cheryl Saffold, D-6th Ward, said the purpose of Wednesday’s planning meeting was to set goals and timelines for discussions on the use of council-designated funds and to explore ways to make them happen. work consistently.

“A few of us are planning to do similar projects in our respective neighborhoods, so we are looking at how best to use these funds to ensure that all areas get a fair share for these types of projects. that enable the best use of funds.”, she says.

Councilors Greg Greathouse, D-3rd Ward, and Mark Forte, D-4th Ward, said they had specific ideas about how the funds allocated to them would be used, but were checking again with the auditor. and the Office of the General Counsel to determine if projects can be done within the guidelines of the ARP.

Councilor Ronald White, D-7th Ward, met with around seven residents on Saturday to discuss a list of ideas for how they would like the money to be used, including transforming the former property of the Secret school in the park.

White previously met with Warren City Schools Business Manager John Lacy, who is expected to forward the suggestion to the Warren City Schools Superintendent and possibly the school board for discussion.

Councilman Gary Steinbeck, D-at Large, said he was inclined to use as much money as was allocated for police and fire departments.

“I said we had the opportunity of a lifetime,” said Steinbeck. “Many neighborhood council members will use their funds to beautify their neighborhoods. I think we not only have to have beautiful neighborhoods, but also safe communities. »

Councilman Ashley Miner, D-5th Ward, will attend a Southeast Side Community Association meeting at 6 p.m. June 23 at 2534 Milton St. to assess her constituents’ concerns.

Councilman Ken MacPherson, D-at Large, also has a few projects in mind.

“What we should be doing is investing in projects that bring the most help to neighborhoods in the city,” he said. “We have over 20,000 homes in the city, so if we can do something that would help people maintain housing, we would do something that could bring about generational change.”

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