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Wadena County keeps ARPA discussions going

Commissioners discussed where the funds have gone thus far, requests and the expectation of more departments to share ideas. The county received about $2.7 million. The funds are available through 2024.

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WADENA — While trying to keep track of American Rescue Plan Act spending and proposals, Wadena County commissioners again encouraged regular updates through at least March.

Commissioners discussed where the funds have gone thus far, requests and the expectation of more departments to share ideas on Jan 4. The county received about $2.7 million. The funds are available through 2024.

Some of the funds are not finalized. As of December 2021, the board approved:

  • $45,310 for Human Services vehicle

  • $13,500 for fairgrounds sewer and water upgrades to the beer garden. This was a separate project from the drainage project .

  • $11,638 for jail kitchen updates; an additional (up to) $15,000 could be utilized if needed.

  • $56,172 for dispatch center remodel

RELATED ARTICLE: Wadena has big plans for big chunk of county’s ARPA fund

The proposed ideas include: a list from Human Services , the HVAC at courthouse and Public Health, and the Folkestad East Addition . The project would be a housing development with a nature park area. Wadena Development Authority Director Dean Uselman said the developer and seller agreed to wait until March for the purchase proposal. Uselman noted there is “a lot of interest” in the project.

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A list of spendings and requests will continue to be presented at future meetings.

The board also approved:

  • Commissioner Jon Kangas as board chair and commissioner Mike Weyer as vice chair.

  • The liquor license for R & J Horse Sales for horse shows, auctions and rodeo.

  • The hire of highway administrative technician Heather Schmitz at $16.20 per hour.

  • The highway department’s annual purchases totaling $863,000. The requests are made at the start each year and purchases are made as needed for items such as aggregate materials and roadside spraying. In 2021, the request was $904,000.

  • The AMC Delegates as the commissioners, county auditor-treasurer, coordinator and human services director. The commissioners will continue their policy committee assignments for environment and natural resources, general government, health and human services, public safety and transportation and infrastructure.

  • Voting for Commissioner Bill Stearns for the Sourcewell Board of Directors.

  • The first publication of the 2021 Wadena County financial statements to the Review Messenger. The second publication of the 2021 Wadena County financial statements to the Wadena Pioneer Journal. The Review Messenger as the 2022 Official Wadena County Newspaper for publication of the legal notices and publication of the delinquent tax notice. Stearns voted against the first and third items.

  • The Todd and Wadena county representatives for the Todd-Wadena Community Corrections Executive Committee and Advisory Board. The commissioners on the committee are Sheldon Monson and Bill Stearns. Commissioners asked for the information earlier in future years.
Rebecca Mitchell is a Multimedia Reporter for the Wadena Pioneer Journal and Perham Focus. She loves capturing local stories through words, photos and videos, and providing resources for the community.
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