Supervisors approve allocation of $1.5 million in ARPA funds to county roads

By Jalen Maki

Tomahawk Leader Editor

MERRILL – American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds earmarked for Lincoln County will be put towards maintaining and improving county roads.

During its meeting at the Lincoln County Service Center in Merrill on Tuesday, June 20, the Lincoln County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a resolution allocating $1.5 million in ARPA funds to the Lincoln County Highway Department.

The funds would be used for reconditioning, paving and/or performing maintenance on county roads, according to the resolution.

The resolution’s approval comes several months after the board gave the thumbs up to a vision statement and branding aimed at marketing tourism and bringing visitors to Lincoln County, with the ultimate goal being an increase in sales tax revenue.

According to the resolution, county highways and roads have “fallen behind a desired 20- or 25-year maintenance schedule, leaving some in poor condition and making travel difficult.”

“These highways and roads are used by residents and visitors to the county for purposes of recreation and tourism, and improving the condition of some of these county highways and roads would further the objective of promoting and encouraging travel, tourism and recreation within Lincoln County,” the resolution stated.

Prior to the vote, Board Chair and District 9 Supervisor Don Friske, who authored the resolution, pointed to County Highways A, K, L, S and U as needing “a significant amount of TLC.”

The board ultimately approved the resolution with minimal discussion.

With the resolution’s approval, Lincoln County has roughly $1 million in ARPA funds remaining.

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