BOONE — At its July 13 meeting, the Boone Town Council voted to allocate a combined $233,366 of town funds to 14 organizations in the community.
First the board looked to approve a resolution for accepting funds from the American Rescue Plan Act, a federal bill signed into action in March that allocated more than $350 billion in emergency funding for state, local, territorial and Tribal governments as the country works its way out of the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic impacts.
The board approved the resolution unanimously.
According to Town Manager John Ward, the town was able to expand their outside organization funding through the funds they received from the ARPA. The council had $234,600 available for allocation, leaving $1,234 in leftover funding.
However, Ward noted that not all outside agencies were eligible to receive those funds, such as the Daniel Boone Native Gardens and the Watauga Humane Society.
“In the Daniel Boone Native Gardens, the building of a pathway or a fence does not meet the (ARPA) designations,” Ward said. “If we were to limit the Daniel Boone Native Gardens to a tourism-based allocation, not an infrastructure-based one, then we could potentially utilize that type of funding.”
After some deliberation, the council opted to allocate almost all of the funds available, which will be booked as an amendment to the 2021-22 fiscal year budget.
Receiving the largest amount will be the Hospitality House with $41,000, an increase from the $28,000 they requested, followed by the Community Care Clinic’s $34,000 and the Blue Ridge Women in Agriculture and Hunger and Health Coalition each received an allocation of $24,000.
The Southern Appalachia Historical Association and OASIS were the only other organizations to receive more than $20,000, being allocated $22,000 and $21,000, respectively.
Receiving $16,366 was the Children’s Playhouse while Mountain Alliance and the Western Youth Network each received $13,000.
WAMY Community Action was allocated $9,000 and the Friends of the Watauga County Public Library, LIFE Village and Watauga Food Council were each given $5,000. Rounding out the allocations was the Watauga County Project on Aging with $1,000.
Ward said organizations that were unable to receive funding will be looked at in the future, with the plan being to find alternative sources to help them with projects.