Bethany Council Approves 3 Additional Projects For ARPA Funding

Bethany’s Board of Aldermen approved applications submitted by 3 organizations for American Rescue Plan Act funding during a meeting held Monday night. A total of 4 organizations applied for funding and presented their projects at the session.

In the end, the city settled on the distribution of $100,000 in ARPA funding for the Bethany Parks and Recreation Department. That funding is being pledged toward 2 new HVAC systems, floor refinishing, the replacement of ceiling tiles, painting, stage walls, work on the tennis court at Bethany Memorial Park, the creation of 2 new pickle ball courts, and establishing a hard surface trail surrounding Memorial Park.

The Bethany Fair, Incorporated will be pledged $74,000 to create a new restroom facility that will be located between the Commercial Arts Building and the Exhibits Building.

Downtown Bethany, Incorporated will also receive $74,000. That money will be authorized by a board through the Main Street Improvement Program for Bethany. Under that program, downtown businesses can apply for funding that would be used to improve the exteriors of their buildings. A Town Hall meeting will be held on Monday, March 28th at the Bethany Community Gym that will explain the structure of the program. An Outreach Specialist with the Missouri Main Street Connection Program will attend and will explain the program and model for revitalization. Community members will also determine goals to guide the Main Street organization for its future steps. That meeting will be held Monday, March 28th from 5 until 7pm at the Bethany Community Gym.

Bethany’s Public Library also attended the meeting requesting $58,144 in their application of ARPA funds for a lift that would allow the library to meet ADA requirements and be able to utilize more space in the basement of their facility. The city will not distribute APRA funding to the library for the lift at this time, but they did commit to find funding in the next budget towards the library’s objective of ADA compliance.

Bethany’s council has previously spent $215,000 for blowers at the wastewater plant. If ARPA funds were not used for that project, the city would have needed to raise sewer rates in the past budget year. The Bethany Police Department, the VFW, the Bethany Country Club, the Sheltered Workshop, the Harrison County Genealogical Society, and the Harrison County Council on Aging had previously been approved for ARPA funding.

With the 3 applications approved, the City of Bethany has now obligated all but $564 of the nearly $564,000 that had been approved for the city.