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County needs to spend money

Warren County officials are scrambling to find projects in which to use Governor’s Grant money before the June 30 deadline. 

In January of 2021, Gov. Bill Lee developed the 2021-22 Local Government Grant program for Tennessee counties and cities/ towns in the recovery effort of the COVID pandemic. The deadline to use this money is fast approaching and county officials are trying to find ways to spend it. The money can be used on one-time expenditures and cannot be used on recurring expenses like salaries.

The county Budget and Finance Committee recently discussed possible projects. Finance Department director Justin Cotten told the committee several projects that could possibly be finished by the deadline.

Projects mentioned were: $136,000 for new EMS load systems, $12,000 for four new awnings at Warren County Administrative Offices, $132,107 for a paving project at Warren County Administrative Offices, $4,902 for new carpet in two courthouse offices that will require money from Greg Bowdoin’s maintenance budget to finish.

“Is there anything, anything at all, that might be more important than the paving? That is the only think I’m hung up on to tell you the truth,” asked Commissioner Cole Taylor.

Said Cotton, “Honestly, I haven’t had anyone who has come to me with a project that would fall within the timeframe of what we are trying to do. It is a June 30 deadline. It is not just starting projects. We have to have the checks written. It has got to be done, wrapped up, and finished. Again, if we don’t get in line I will be back and we will be looking for another $132,000 worth of projects, but they will end up being nickels and dimes like this carpet.”

The committee approved the motion to use the money on these projects with the exception of the leftover expense of the carpet to come out of the maintenance budget.