Town of Charlton American Rescue Plan Act

Spending Plan

Signed into law on March 10, the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan Act, includes $360 billion in relief for state and local governments across the country. For Massachusetts, the ARPA provides $2 billion for municipalities and $1.34 billion for counties. As a non-entitlement unit, The Town of Charlton is scheduled to receive a total of $4,098,908 over the next 2 years under this Act.

In accordance with the Act, funds may be used for the following broad range categories:

  • Response to the public health emergency or its negative economic consequences

  • Provision of premium pay to eligible workers

  • Revenue replacement

  • Investments in water, sewer and broadband infrastructure

Funds received under the Act, may not be used for:

  • Using the money for federal matching funds

  • Premium pay for employees who were able to telework during the public health emergency

  • Funding pension accounts, paying off outstanding debt, or making deposits to reserve accounts or rainy day funds

The covered period for State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds runs from March 3, 2021, through Dec. 31, 2024. The Treasury guidance permits funds that are obligated by Dec. 31, 2024, to be expended through Dec. 31, 2026.

Following a diagnostic review of our revenue collections relative to the guidance provided by the federal government, the town may apply up to $3,451,744 towards revenue replacement which provides additional latitude for the use of funds outside of the prescribed categories

The following plan outlines Phase 1 spending priorities outlined by the Board of Selectmen. A public hearing was held by the Board of Selectmen on the Plan at their regular meeting, November 23, 2021 at 6:45pm. The plan was subsequently approved.

The Board of Selectmen invites comments from the public on the plan during the public hearing or in advance in writing. Questions on the ARPA Plan may be submitted to Town Administrator, Andrew Golas at

Department: Town Administrator/EDC

Program: Business & Non-Profit Assistance Grants

Funding Category: Response to negative economic impacts

Budget: $200,000

Create a local business and nonprofit assistance grant program to award grants of up to $20,000 to fund the investment in improvements to private business facilities and offset the impacts to COVID-19 on local business. The Town may also award grants that will bring the greatest return on investment to the Town.

Department: Sewer

Program: Operational Replacement Engineering Study

Funding Category: Sewer Infrastructure

Budget: $85,000

The Town of Charlton Waste Water Treatment Facility (WWTF) on average receives approximately 50% of its design rated flow capacity and approximately 75% of its design rated biochemical oxygen demand capacity, however, the influent to the WWTF routinely exceeds the design basis for ammonia which may result in periodic exceedances of effluent ammonia limits. improvements to the headwork’s building including improvements to where all flow enters the plant and where flow currently gets restricted in high-flow events. Funding to include $85,000 towards the study of necessary improvements to Headwork and EQ tank improvements. Further appropriations from ARPA or other funding sources should be considered following the conclusion of the study.

Department: Police/Fire

Program: Radio System Upgrades

Funding Category: Response to Public Health Emergency

Budget: $800,000

A significant capital need for the municipality is its aging public safety radio communication infrastructure. The Town has already invested $250,000 towards necessary radio system improvements, primarily targeted towards dispatch equipment and consoles. The $800,000 appropriation would go primarily towards improving antenna and repeater infrastructure and switching frequencies from legacy analog to digital.

Department: Board of Health

Program: COVID-19 Mitigation Efforts

Funding Category: Response to Public Health Emergency

Budget: $100,000

While over the past year and a half, we have come to learn how to live with COVID, public health efforts continue to mitigate new resurgence of COVID-19 variants including contract tracing efforts and access to a public health nurse. Funding is to be dedicated under this program to continue these mitigation efforts. Additionally, these funds may be used to offset costs not covered by CARES or FEMA.

Department: Council on Aging

Program: Facility Feasibility Study

Funding Category: Revenue Replacement

Budget: $50,000

As became evident during the pandemic, the facilities that are currently used as the Town’s Senior Center are woefully undersized and poorly laid out for their intended purpose. The town has faced numerous substantial capital facilities needs in which this facility has not been addressed. The Overlook facility on Masonic Home Road has indicated that there is currently vacant facilities which may fit the space needs of the Department. Additionally, the town has been made aware of the former Charlton Furniture property which may also be a viable option for a Senior/Community Center. We look to utilize ARPA funds to conduct a feasibility study on the available space at the Overlook and former Charlton Furniture to identify what would be required to renovate the space as the future home of the Senior Center and to reuse the space in Town Hall for other municipal purposes.

Department: Town Administrator

Program: Digital Archival Storage

Funding Category: Revenue Replacement

Budget: $250,000

A significant issue that has faced town hall is the lack of space for archival records. The current space that records are stored is beyond capacity and is not climate controlled. Funding would be used to digitize all permanent records and create a searchable repository for all public records.

Department: Police/Water

Program: Water Line Connection

Funding Category: Water Infrastructure

Budget: $150,000

Connect Charlton Police Department building at 85 Masonic Home Road to municipal water system

Department: Town Administrator/Finance Director

Program: Excise Revenue Replacement

Funding Category: Revenue Replacement

Budget: $300,000

Apply funds toward local receipt revenue to account for projected reduction in excise tax from new vehicle supply chain issues and offset the funds to raise and appropriate through taxation.

Department: Town Administrator/Finance Director

Program: Administration of Funds

Funding Category: Revenue Replacement

Budget: $50,000

Funding to cover auditing (single audit), Revenue Replacement calculation and other administrative burden of managing funds.

Unallocated for Future Expenditures

The total proposed budget plan leaves a total unallocated balance of $2,113,908.

The remaining funds may be used to supplement proposed projects or fund additional capital needs.