Texas County government has distributed about $1.15 million from the proceeds of the American Rescue Plan, which was signed into law last spring.
Texas County Presiding Commissioner Scott Long said the lion’s share went to provide new digital radios for all law enforcement and EMS services in the county to improve communications and response times in emergency situations in the county. The outlay was $890,144.
Another $260,000 went for premium pay to county law enforcement.
“We have several other projects which we have tentatively approved but have yet to receive an invoice to pay,” Long said.
Earlier, the federal government gave estimates of what would be distributed in the county under the program. Two distributions of checks will occur in 2021 and 2022. The largest total goes to the City of Licking, which will receive about $570,000. Houston and Cabool each are expecting $380,000. Other towns expected to collect funding are: Raymondville, $60,000; Plato, $20,000; and Summersville, $90,000. It is the first time municipalities will receive money. The CARES Act approved in 2020 sent no direct aid to cities.
Texas County’s tally under the program for essential government services and water, sewer and broadband projects, is $4.93 million, about $2 million more than the CARES Act.
In October, the City of Houston used its first cut — $210,058 —to pay back the electrical department, whose surpluses are paying for the rollout of fiber-to-the-home in the city.