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Reno County Commissioners approve ARPA funding Agreements


By Lucky Kidd, Ad Astra Radio


HUTCHINSON, Kan.Following revisions to address concerns raised last month, Reno County Commissioners Tuesday approved sub-recipient agreements with Interfaith Housing and Community Services and the United Way of Reno County for ARPA funding to address housing and childcare issues.

The revised agreement with Interfaith Housing incorporates changes suggested by Commissioner Randall Parks. IHCS Chief Executive Officer Clint Nelson said they would separate the funds into a specific revolving reserve fund with the intent of them being used for home buyer units. Commissioner Don Bogner also noted a specific emphasis on rural areas in the revision.

Concerning the childcare funds, there was a lot of criticism at the January 24th Commission meeting concerning a coordinator position proposed as part of the plans. Denise Gilliland from the United Way said that the position is still being proposed but will be funded through innovation and expansion funds to give them more flexibility in terms of salary and the type of person they can hire.

The salary for the position, which may be only for a 2–3-year period, will likely be less than the $90 thousand a year figure reported earlier.

The revised proposal also increased funding allocated for sustainability models, an important issue for Commissioner John Whitesel, who said we need to have something that can be used to help grow child care in Reno County for the long term.