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City Parking Authority gets unexpected funding

$34K expected from Altoona’s American Rescue Plan allocation

The Altoona Parking Authority recently discovered to its surprise that it is entitled to a total of $72,000 from two separate City of Altoona sources.

The authority expects to receive a $34,000 share of Altoona’s $39-million allocation from the American Rescue Plan to make up for revenue shortfalls due to COVID-19, according to Executive Director Patrick Miller.

It expects to get $38,000 that was earmarked for it in the city’s capital budget in 2019 — an allocation that the city hadn’t informed the authority about, according to Miller.

Miller initiated the effort to obtain ARP money.

The amount calculated reflects a shortfall in revenue from the last three quarters of 2020 and the first quarter of 2021, Miller said.

Miller recently met with City Manager Omar Strohm about reimbursement, based on ARP eligibility guidelines.

“I feel confident the city will give it serious consideration,” Miller said.

“The bad news is we lost money (due to COVID-19),” Miller said. The good news is it seems we can recapture it.”

The ARP money would represent about 12% of the authority’s normal annual revenue intake, Miller said.

The authority didn’t lay anyone off due to COVID-19, according to Miller and office manager Vickie Chilcote. “Nobody lost hours,” Miller said.

Strohm brought up the availability of the capital allocation.

Strohm asked Miller to send a letter formally requesting it, Miller said.

Some of the “windfall” from those two sources will go to cover the $2,700 cost of replacing lights in the authority parking lot near the Mishler Theatre and the $3,900 cost of repairing a section of sidewalk on the top deck of the Transportation Center parking garage — where a thick, flexible coat of sealant has begun to peel.

“It will go a long way to help us out,” Miller said of the money.

Mirror Staff Writer

William Kibler is at 814-949-7038.

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