Eight ARPA funded projects and seven Creek County entities receive approval and ARPA monies

Alex Walters

The Creek County Commissioners have agreed to allocate $3 million in ARPA funds on roads and bridges, giving each district $1 million to use on their projects. With numerous large-scale projects Aimed to begin, tracking both the funds and projects became a bit of a concern. The county plans to track the projects and funds with the Misty McCurley KIT program, but says they may have to change course or alter methods after they start and test it out. To further track funds specific to each district, it was suggested that the County create subaccounts within the APRA funds account special to each district for a checks-and-balance type of system within the KIT program. Andrew Goforth, assistant District Attorney, voiced his worries on the possible issues subaccounts could have with reporting on the projects, but county clerk Jennifer Mortazavi assured with the account number mimicking project numbers it should be fine. The commissioners moved forward and approved the creation of three subaccounts, one per district, and the distribution of $1 million each.
Once the funding had been approved and allocated, Commissioner Newt Stephens got right to work presenting several projects within District #1 he was eager to get underway. Each project funded by ARPA is required to be brought before the board for discussion and approval – “Now the money is in the bank,” Stephens said, “and a lot of roads and bridges we could start making a big difference on.” Jarrod Whitehouse of District #3 added that a lot of the roads were last overlaid back in the 50’s, and the citizens of Creek County could seriously benefit from these ARPA projects. Fixing roads and bridges isn’t cheap either, as it can cost around $120,000 for just one mile. Leon Warner said that although it sounds like a lot of money, it goes very quick on roads and bridges.
The eight projects approved for funding in district #1 have an estimated cost of around $877,762 and include the bridge on W 171st St S, Slick Road and W 151st St S. Stephens reviewed all eight projects individually, and states all of them are high traffic roads that have been neglected for too long and are sitting in bad shape. He said overlaying them would be the best plan for longevity and less work and cost in the future. Stephens and Whitehouse discussed splitting some of the cost of Slick Road since a part of it dips into District #3. Whitehouse agreed to pay $50,000 from District #3’s ARPA funds to help overlay the N Boundary of Slick Road, while District #1 covered the rest. Now, Creek County’s roads are one step closer to improvement.
Seven Creek County entities that had applied for ARPA funds for water and sewer projects were approved to receive $214,285.71, including manifold, Mounds, Sapulpa, and Creek Rural Water #1. Originally, eight entities were to split the $1.5 million total in ARPA funding for $201,000 each, except Oilton which would have received $88,000. However, since Taneha withdrew their own application, the funds will be divided evenly across the remaining seven for the $214,285. This is great for Oilton, as well, as they realized drilling a well will cost more than they had previously requested, and amended their application. Goforth ensured he and Barbara Alrbrittion will work to make sure each entity receiving ARPA funds is complying with DEQ requirements, each project will be tracked, and help will be provided as needed for bids and plans. Glen Musser will meet with each applicant when they present their projects to the board for approval to review bid specs and information, and then work with the engineers throughout the project to make sure everything stays on track. The commissioners approved the allocation of ARPA funding to the seven county entities unanimously. Next, each town, city, or entity will need to bring their project to the board for separate approval before letting the project out for bid. Then, the project will finally be underway and closer to completion.