As the Ada City Council considers its budget for 2020, I hope it will provide amply for Call a Ride.
Town residents unable to drive count on CAR for hospital visits and rides to work. While rides for shopping may seem less important, you would not think so if you needed to buy groceries or pick up a prescription, and local merchants would surely miss these customers. Friends and family are not always available as alternatives, and commercial vehicles cost $10 for a ride CAR offers for $1. That’s a big difference on a limited income.
Pontotoc County funds CAR at a more generous level than does the City, even though most destinations are within Ada. The Valley View Foundation recognized the medical importance with a one-time $150,000 grant for new vehicles and dispatch technology.
Fully funded CAR would not have to ration service, and increased ridership would warrant funding by DOT. Affordable public transportation enhances the quality of life in a community and is a factor folks consider when buying a new home. The Council should bear all this in mind as it plans for the future.
Gary Harris, Ada