SOUDERTON, PA—Over 100 recipients of the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) grant program in Montgomery County gathered earlier today to celebrate the program’s ongoing success with Montgomery County Commissioners Kenneth E. Lawrence Jr. and Jamila H. Winder. Stakeholders from across the county shared their insights on the transformative initiatives that are shaping the future of the community.
"From bolstering public health infrastructure to supporting small businesses, from enhancing our educational systems to strengthening community services, the ARPA funds have touched every corner of our county,” said Kenneth E. Lawrence Jr., Chair of the Montgomery County Board of Commissioners. “These funds have been a catalyst for transformative change across Montgomery County, enabling us to undertake initiatives that have and will significantly enhance the quality of life for our residents."
In August 2022, Montgomery County announced its Recovery Plan, which allocated $161.4 million dollars in ARPA funding across 112 businesses, nonprofits, and organizations in the county. Since then, 79% of the projects representing $87 million in funding have been started, with 19% being complete or almost complete.
“Each organization here today represents progress and innovation. These initiatives have not only met immediate needs but have laid down the foundation for a brighter more inclusive future for our County,” expressed Jamila H. Winder, Vice Chair of the Montgomery County Board of Commissioners. “The stories of change, the lives touched, the future lives that will be impacted…and the communities uplifted stand as a testament to what we can achieve when we work together."
Representing the Montgomery County Recovery Office, the entity overseeing the responsible management of ARPA funds, Tom Bonner, deputy chief operating officer of Montgomery County, said, "We have had a tremendous amount of success in 2023. We distributed $7 million in small grants targeting community fire stations and focusing on minority- and women-owned small businesses. Some of our most transformative projects are still in progress, including the Housing Opportunities Fund for affordable housing construction and our Food Policy Council for strengthening our local food system. We are beginning funded studies to analyze how we provide child care, how our call centers function, how we share data, and how our emergency medical services operate, and the results of those efforts will inform future investments and opportunities for better serving our communities.”
Nelly Jimenez-Arevalo, CEO and executive director of ACLAMO and ARPA grant recipient, said, “Beyond bricks and mortar physical renovation, the funds have transformed this space into a safe, welcoming haven for the community, offering vital services, educational resources, and a place to connect and learn. The impact extends beyond ACLAMO, turning our community center into a vital hub for collaboration, where nonprofits, elected officials, and government agencies converge to connect with each other and the community."
This Recognition Luncheon served as a platform for sharing success stories, insights, and the positive impact of ARPA initiatives on Montgomery County. The collaboration between County Commissioners, the Recovery Office, and grant recipients exemplifies a collective commitment to building a brighter and more resilient community.
More details about the projects funded by the Montgomery County Recovery Office are available on the Recovery Office interactive dashboard.
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