Commissioners debate what to do with remaining SPARK funds

Allen County received $2.4 million from state's SPARK task force. Most of it has been spent, but if the remaining funds aren't used by the end of the year, they'll be sent back to the federal government.



November 18, 2020 - 9:48 AM

Thrive CEO Lisse Regehr, left, and Becky Voorhies, Thrive’s director of health programs, review SPARK funding proposals with county commissioners. Photo by Tim Stauffer / Iola Register

For the second week in a row, county commissioners debated how best to spend unallocated SPARK funds awarded to Allen County.

Earlier this summer, the county received $2.4 million from Kansas’s SPARK task force, which is responsible for distributing federal aid provided via the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act. The vast majority of that money has been spent, but time is of the essence; if the remaining funds aren’t used by the end of the year, they must be returned to the federal government.

With that in mind, Thrive Allen County CEO Lisse Regehr approached commissioners Tuesday with what, she believes, is a “great way to keep those federal dollars in our community.”

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