MIDDLEPORT — The Meigs County Public Transit system is now in operation, transporting Meigs Countians to medical appointments.
The public transit, which is operated by the Meigs County Department of Jobs and Family Service (DJFS), officially started at the beginning of the year, but the agency “experimented” with operations in the fall, according to DJFS Director Chris Shank.
There are currently six vehicles used for the transit system, four of which are handicap accessible vans. The transit system is an “on-demand” appointment based system. Rides are available for non-emergency transport to Medicaid appointments. To arrange a ride to a Medicaid appointment, call 740-444-5555.
Shank said the transit is currently averaging 15 trips per day, Monday through Friday. From Jan. 1 to Jan. 24, 83 trips were made, transporting 109 people.
Shank said the department will work to expand the transit system, eventually assisting agencies in transportation and transporting the public to places such as grocery stores, pharmacies and the license bureau.
The transit system currently has nine inter-agency agreements. Shank said these agreements provide some funding in addition to the grants from the Ohio Department of Transportation. Those funds have totaled over $938,000, and allowed the transit system to hire employees and purchase vehicles. Shank said the agency will apply for those grants again in the spring, which would be funded next year.
Shank said the trips are billed internally with the state for patients. If the transit is available for the public, Shank said there would be an “affordable” fare for the cost of the ride.
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Kayla (Hawthorne) Dunham is a staff writer for Ohio Valley Publishing. Reach her at (304) 675-1333, ext. 1992.