Town Council votes to accept over $5.7 million in COVID relief funds for Monroe

Monroe Town Hall is at 7 Fan Hill Road in Monroe. Photo by John Babina

MONROE, CT — Town Council members unanimously approved a resolution allowing First Selectman Ken Kellogg to pursue $5.75 million worth of coronavirus recovery funds under the American Rescue Plan Act.

The town’s share of the money will come from the U.S. Treasury and be distributed by the state with half coming within 30 days of Connecticut receiving the federal funds. Monroe will receive the other half 12 months after that.

“We are still very much in the weeds of trying to gather as much information as we can in terms of how the funds can be used,” Kellogg told the Town Council at a special meeting Monday night.

The U.S. Treasury released guidance and rules that are 151 pages long, according to Kellogg, who said he and other town officials have been attending webinars put on by the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities and others to ensure they understand it.

The Connecticut Office of Policy and Management contacted the First Selectman’s Office last week, at mid-week, informing him the deadline to accept the funds and its terms is by 5 p.m. on June 9, prompting the special meeting to be convened.

Town Attorney Frank Lieto reviewed the terms and conditions and the Town Council’s Legislative and Administrative Committee unanimously approved moving a resolution forward to the full council.

Town Councilwoman Dee Dee Martin asked where the first half of the money will go, saying she just wanted to have it on the record.

“It will go into the general fund, but it will not be used until we have a plan to utilize it,” Kellogg said. “It cannot be spent until we have a plan in place.”

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