Funds designated to Rocky View County through last week's federal-provincial transit funding will give a much-needed boost to the Rocky View Regional Handi Bus Society.
Executive Director Paul Siller was among those present for the funding announcement. A total of $18,609 provided was based upon their 2019 ridership numbers provided to the Canadian Urban Transit Association.
"It's a really big help because, with the pandemic, all programs were closed, and we were in a form of survival mode of having just enough resources to do what's necessary."
They weren't able to focus on planning their next bus purchases or initiate any fundraising drives for them.
"The funny thing about the pandemic is your ridership could drop 90 per cent in the very early months of it, but your expenses don't drop the same amount, so you've got to take opportunities like this to cover these shortfalls whenever possible."
Their clientele is among the most vulnerable who have struggled desperately through the pandemic to secure transportation to vital appointments, if and when they were available.
"We're not out of the woods here," he says. "Our passengers include some people who have immune compromises, so we're trying to deal with the times while making sure our passengers are as safe as possible."
Attending the transit funding announcement on behalf of RVC was Div. 6 councillor Sunny Samra.