After months of contentious Oklahoma County meetings, the Board of County Commissioners likely took is final multi-million dollar vote to spend federal COVID-19 relief funds Monday.
Commissioners Brain Maughan and Carrie Blumert voted in favor a sending $5 million to the county’s in-demand small business and nonprofit assistance program. The measure also directs $50,000 to the Oklahoma City County Health Department for COVID-19 saliva tests. Commissioner Kevin Calvey voted against the motion.
“If you had asked me in April how I thought this whole process would’ve gone, this is not how I would’ve thought it would’ve gone,” Blumert said.
In protest-filled meetings, the board originally sent $40 million to the county jail. The total federal allocation for COVID-19 relief was $47 million. However, after realizing they couldn’t spend the money by the January 1 deadline, the jail trust voted to send $25 million of that money back to the county.
After Monday’s vote, the Board of County Commissioner has spent approximately:
“I’m really proud of how we about equally distributed the money,” Maughan said. “We took care of our own house first which, is I think the original charge of the money. That was for the infrastructure of our county buildings and for the safety of those who come in.”
“Ultimately, at the end of the day I’m really happy how this turned out,” Blumert said.