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Hopedale - Local Town Pages

PCOA receives funds to add dance and literature classes Select Board approves request 2-1

By Theresa Knapp
At its meeting on Sept. 25, the Select Board voted 2-1 to approve $2,500 in ARPA funds to be granted to the Council on Aging for dance/movement and literature classes.
According to, the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA), is the federal government’s economic stimulus bill to speed up the nation’s recovery from the economic and health effects of the COVID-19 public health emergency.
“This $2,500 will directly result in two additional classes, I believe, being offered at that facility,” said Town Administrator Mitch Ruscitti.
Selectperson Scott Savage was opposed to the use of ARPA funds in that way.
“While this is apparently a good program and I’m sure that it would be enjoyed by a few members of our aging community, I personally don’t think that utilizing ARPA funds for this type of a program is something that’s in the best interest of the town as a whole especially as our ARPA funds are dwindling. There are some things that are coming up that I think could use ARPA funds more efficiently to benefit a larger pool of residents. I know that a lot of programs out there are funded by registration fees in other areas and I think that should be the same with this.”  
Select Board Chair Glenda Hazard was in support of the motion.
“I feel like it’s a great use of ARPA funds. I think it’s a pretty small amount of money and we don’t do a heck of a lot for our senior population expense-wise, as a matter of fact, the senior center’s a pretty shoe-string low-budget operation so I think if $2,500 in ARPA funds is helpful in programming then I’m happy to have that happen.”
Selectperson Bernie Stock, who made the motion, agreed with Hazard’s support.
“I would concur, I guess because I have a front-row seat to what goes on over there.”
The motion passed 2-1 with Hazard and Stock in favor, Savage opposed.