FAQs about May 28 Town Meeting & ARPA Funds

What are ARPA Funds?

On March 11, 2021, the American Rescue Plan Act was signed into law and established the Coronavirus State Fiscal Recovery Fund and Coronavirus Local Fiscal Recovery Funds, which together make up the Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds (SLFRF) program. This program is intended to provide support to state, territorial, local, and tribal governments in responding to the economic and public health impacts of COVID-19 and in their efforts to contain impacts on their communities, residents, and businesses.

How much was Old Saybrook awarded?

Old Saybrook’s SLFRF funding award is $2,956,466.25.

How much money has been spent to date?


What can we spend ARPA money on?

The Town of Old Saybrook has discretion in how best to use these funds as long as such use fits into one of the following four statutory categories:

  1. To respond to the COVID-19 public health emergency or its negative economic impacts;
  2. To respond to workers performing essential work during the COVID-19 public health emergency by providing premium pay to such eligible workers of the recipient, or by providing grants to eligible employers that have eligible workers who performed essential work;
  3. For the provision of government services, to the extent of the reduction in revenue of such recipient due to the COVID–19 public health emergency, relative to revenues collected in the most recent full fiscal year of the recipient prior to the emergency; and
  4. To make necessary investments in water, sewer, or broadband infrastructure.

When must we allocate?

The money must be allocated by the end of 2024.

What projects have we approved to date?

You can find all the projects HERE.

How is the town proposing to spend the money at this Town Meeting?

  •   $100,000 for the purpose of repairing the Old Saybrook Point seawall.  
  • $150,000 for the purpose of adding funds to the Park and Recreation Capital Fund 3053.  
  • $100,000 for the purpose of adding funds to the Acton Public Library renovation fund 2875.  
  • $250,000 for the purpose of setting aside monies to assist with the revitalization of Mariner’s Way.  
  • $500,000 for the purpose of setting aside monies for use by the Housing Task Force in developing diverse housing options in Old Saybrook.  

Who approved these projects?

The Board of Selectman established an ARPA Committee when the funds became available.  They solicit and approve applications.  Their decisions are then reviewed and approved by both the Board of Finance and the Board of Selectmen.

What else is being approved at this Town Meeting?

  1. An appropriation in the amount of $87,500 so that the town may apply for a resiliency grant from the Long Island Sound Futures Fund, said funds to be drawn from the capital non-recurring fund.
  • An appropriation in the amount of $25,000 so the town can implement a grant from the Long Island Sound Futures Fund 2022 Proposal – Coastal Resiliency Plan for Westbrook Old Saybrook, Clinton and the Borough of Fenwick, said funds to be drawn from the capital non-recurring fund.

Why are these projects important?

The revitalization of Mariners’ Way has been under consideration for nearly a decade but a new study has outlined some very exciting – and potentially doable ideas.  The money proposed at the Town Meeting will allow Old Saybrook to work with developers to explore the ideas the consultants proposed.  Many developers want a partner like Town Development Authority to begin the process and this money will allow us to begin these conversations.

Our 2021 Affordable Housing Plan identified the need for more and more diverse housing – particularly for seniors who are downsizing, young people who want to start their families and workers who want to reduce the cost/time of their commutes.  The first recommendation was to form a Housing Task Force and this money like that for Mariners’ Way would allow the Task Force to explore all sorts of opportunities.

Climate change is threatening the beauty and security of our homes and beaches.  The right projects – like the seawall and the resiliency grants – will allow us to project our infrastructure, property and natural resources.

Our parks and recreation are a vital part of what attracts residents and tourists alike.  It is essential for us to make regular improvements in every one of our facilities.

Will these projects cost the taxpayers?

No.  The money being allocated will NOT impact taxpayers.