Pott. County commissioners discuss CARES Act funds for businesses; US-24 Hwy/Green Valley Rd. project

CARES Act funds for businesses
The Pottawatomie County Commission discussed Monday how it will allocate $400,000 in CARES Act funds it has set aside for businesses.
Jack Allston, Pottawatomie County Economic Development Corporation executive director, says they are going to prioritize certain types of businesses during this process.
“We want to place some emphasis on childcare because that’s a double hit,” Allston said. “Not only does the company get hit, but the parents get hit too because they may not have the childcare available to them for them to be able to go to work. And then senior housing as well.”
According to Allston, 13 of the 22 businesses requesting funds are asking for less than $10,000.
Andrea Umscheid, Pottawatomie County operations officer, says it is recommended that the county limit the size of grants that are given out, provide grants for eligible organizations and then let the organizations decide how funds are used.
“So provide them a grant and they can use it as they see fit,” Umscheid said. “If they want to put it all towards their payroll and just cover that aspect of their business or they want to put it towards their loss of revenue or if they want to use it buying PPE, barriers, etc..”
Pottawatomie County administrators will provide the commission with more CARES Act fund-eligibility information next Monday.
US-24 Hwy/Green Valley Rd. intersection project
The Pottawatomie County Commission also discussed Monday paying the Bartlett and West engineering firm about $315,000 for inspection services on the US-24 Hwy/Green Valley Rd. intersection project.
Although it is necessary to obtain inspection services before starting construction on the project, County Commissioner Pat Weixelman says he would like Barlett and West to take on more responsibility before moving forward.
“I’m trying to get away from as much liability as we can on this thing,” Weixelman said. “It just looks to me like if we’re giving them $315,000 for a year’s worth of work, gathering information and everything else, it looks to me like they ought to be the ones administering the pay estimates, requests, verifying the materials or what’s documented for the job or asked for the job.”
The commission will discuss adding responsibilities and hold a bid opening for the project next Monday.
Pottawatomie County Commissioners also approved an approximately $74,000 purchase of an overhead crane for the Public Works Fleet Maintenance Facility. That will likely be installed this fall.

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