Woodbury County Supervisors respond to claims of misusing COVID funding

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SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) — Federal COVID funding pledged toward construction of a new Woodbury County Law Enforcement Center was the main topic of discussion at Tuesday night’s county supervisors meeting.

A member from a group called “Untied Today, Stronger Tomorrow,” who voiced their displeasure with the board’s spending.

“This decision negatively impacts Woodbury County residents by failing to attend to primary goals of this federal relief bill,” said the member.

Board Vice-Chairman Matthew Ung addressed the points of contention but added the LEC Authority held several public meetings throughout the county for folks to learn about the project. Ung also explained how federal COVID Relief Funds are able to be used for law enforcement purposes.

Ung said those speaking for “United Today, Stronger Tomorrow” didn’t have their facts straight.

“I don’t begrudge anyone being upset, having their issues, their feelings. Obviously everyone has that but what I have an issue with is just misinformation,” Ung said. “Nothing I said was really quoted and proven to be false. So if they have issues with how I quoted them, I’ll apologize if I misquoted them, but I watched every meeting two three times. I spent hours composing this, because I want to get the facts right.”

The LEC is estimated to cost just $58 million while voters approved a $50 million bond in 2020. The pandemic caused many material costs to increase.

Supervisors are requesting 15 of the $20 million Woodbury County is set to receive from federal COVID relief be pledged to the jail project.

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