EDITORIAL — County making best use of two percent funds yet
Arenac County government has received well over $200,000 in two-percent class three gaming revenue funds from the Saginaw-Chippewa Indian Tribe, but the $50,000 (out of roughly $81,000) being distributed to the Arenac County Housing Commission for handicap ramps and weatherization is the best use of the funds yet.
Other ways the county has spent monies from the Tribe include approximately $15,500 to Sunrise Side Senior Services, $36,000 for central dispatch center improvements and a mobile command center and $90,000 for digital mapping of the county – all very acceptable ways to use the funds from the Tribe and helpful in their own ways. But weatherizing homes and installing handicap ramps at homes in the county will directly benefit two types of people: those who are being stung by high utility prices, maybe even risking their well being by staying in a cold house; and those who are disabled, but still out and about, wanting a more accessible home.
In summation, the housing department funds will make life better for people who are either cold, restricted, and possibly both.
In this current recession, too often concerns have been only about what’s best for the economy – hoping to increase a tax base or grow the wealth of the area trumps all other issues. But the county commissioners, in this case and with the funds for Sunrise Senior Services, put vulnerable people on the top of their list. In an environment where more and more emphasis is being put on dollar signs, it’s good to see that the welfare of our neighbors and friends is still a priority.