ARPA Funds Grant Application Discussion, Updated MOU To Begin August 1 For Adult Diversion Program

WAYNE – Wayne County Board of Commissioners received the proposed State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds grant application during their regularly scheduled meeting on Tuesday.

From the Public Safety Annex, a good portion of Tuesday morning’s meeting pertained to the American Rescue Plan Act Funds.

Commissioners stated they needed more time to look over the application before having Chairman Jim Rabe sign it.

Sandra Hansen, Disaster Recovery Specialist, has been working with County Clerk, Deb Finn as well as County Treasurer, Tammy Paustian and stated the grant application calls for basic information along with what rules need to be followed. Also, a specific project would need to be listed for use of funds.

A separate contract would also need to be made for 100% recoupment between Wayne County and the individual/group applying for the funds in case the money is spent and then found ineligible.

Again, with this being first-come, first-serve, Wayne County Board of Commissioners want to have more time before deciding and allowing applications to be filled out.

Hansen also stated that only roughly $74,000 of the Courthouse Renovation Project could be eligible through the ARPA Funds. Wayne County signed an agreement in December of 2018 as expenses incurred prior to March of 2021 would be ruled out. The total project cost was around $2.3 million with roughly $400,000 coming back from Historical Tax Credits. No decision has been made to utilize the $1.8 million in ARPA Funds which will need to be obligated by 2024 and used by 2026.

Board of Commissioners signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for the Adult Diversion Program as Wayne County Attorney, Amy Miller introduced Kyle Sperry to the board. Sperry will begin as the Adult Diversion Coordinator on August 1. All current individuals who are in the program will conclude their time with Jill Belt prior to August 1 as there’ll be no transmission.

The cost to the Wayne County Adult Diversion Program will also increase from $250 to $350 on August 1. Sperry spent time as a Juvenile Probation Officer in Norfolk and currently works full-time for Heritage Homes. He is a 2016 graduate from Wayne State College with a Criminal Justice major.

Miller will continue to take care of the happenings in the court as Sperry will coordinate with Miller if the individual in the Adult Diversion Program passed or failed.

Amy Topp with Wayne County Nebraska Extension introduced her 4-H assistant, Emma Krysl who has been in her current position for a month. She recently graduated from Wayne State College this past May and participated in 4-H during her youth years in Holt County.

Also, Julie Kreikemeier will take over as an Extension Educator in Wayne County as well as Pierce County. Kreikemeier will be coming over from Colfax County. Wayne County Extension is wrapping up their 15 educational events which began towards the end of May. They’ve had good attendance and will be concluding with activities at the Wayne Public Library.

Nic Kemnitz, Wayne County Emergency Manager also provided updates to the board and has been working with Winside Public Schools Superintendent, Andrew Offner on a potential safe room/storm shelter project. The group would utilize FEMA Hazard Mitigation Funds. Kemnitz was also on the Winside Village Board meeting Tuesday evening to discuss the possibility of this project. This is a competitive process and Kemnitz is looking to take the early steps to see what is available.

The Wayne County Fair is Thursday, July 21 – Sunday, July 24. Kemnitz will be needing the snow fence to place around the generator at the fairgrounds and has put out a request for Emergency Management support during the evenings of the fair to Cedar, Cuming and Dixon County Emergency Managements. Kemnitz stated the assistance provided by these counties have been a tremendous help and would help them out if needed.

Kemnitz will plan on setting up the EOC Trailer at the 100th annual Wayne County Fair on Tuesday, July 19.

A full-scale exercise will be taking place on August 11 between 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. at Matheson Gas inside the Hoskins Fire District next to Nucor in Stanton County. Kemnitz attended a recent planning meeting for this exercise in mid-June.

District 2 Commissioner, Dean Burbach is looking to purchase a used motor grader. Their salesman from Norfolk found a 2007 for sale with less than 4,800 hours being a nice machine. Burbach will need to decide if he’ll plan on trading in a machine or selling on Big Iron prior to a Special Purchase Provision being put together which will allow for other businesses to submit a bid with similar equipment. Burbach stated to get a new machine is about nine months out.

A change to Tuesday’s regular agenda also took off the North Fork Area Transit route proposal.

The next regularly scheduled Wayne County Board of Commissioners meeting will be on Tuesday July 19 at 9 a.m.