Beaver Dam Mayor Outlines Several Uses For ARPA Funds

(Beaver Dam) Beaver Dam Mayor Becky Glewen has identified several potential uses of federal stimulus dollars. The city received around $1.7-million dollars as part of the American Rescue Plan Act. Earlier this year, the council approved $350-thousand dollars in ARPA funding to replenish the downtown façade improvement and business attraction grant programs. Another $50-thousand-dollars was used to develop a master plan for Edgewater and Crystal Lake parks.

Glewen told us recently on WBEV’s Community Comment that she would like to see a portion of the funds go to supplement the city taxi service with the purchase of a public transit shuttle for established routes targeting major shopping areas. 

“Our rates for taxis are way too low, we need to increase those but we know that raising the rates affects the elderly, income constrained and disabled more than anything,” she says, “so if we also could provide a transit system route people would have an option at least, at least they could get to certain areas of the community at a much lower cost.” 

Glewen would also like to give a portion of ARPA funds to full-time and part-time city workers as a “bonus.” 

“I do believe because of the inflationary period that we’re going through and the inability of us as a public sector municipality to provide the compensation that we should be giving to employees,” she says, “that we should take a portion of the ARPA funds to do a one-time inflationary adjustment that would not change salaries into the future but would just be a one-time thing.” 

Glewen is also wanting to spend ARPA funds on property acquisitions that would help improve gateways to the community and enhance downtown housing options. Other potential uses would target childcare deficiencies in the community, and help with downtown business attraction.