Written by PETER KUEBECK Sentinel Staff Writer
Wednesday, 27 February 2013 10:07
PERRYSBURG - The shape of a future transit system in the city is becoming clearer.
At Tuesday's Health, Sanitation and Public Utilities committee meeting, members approved a slate of recommendations offered by the Perrysburg 4 Transportation Committee, a body working to promote transit in the city.
"It does seem to be very important for the voters to understand the services that are going to be provided," said Councilwoman Maria Ermie, who attended the meeting. "I think that we need to state what they are."
With the failure of a 1.45-mill levy to support public transportation in November, City Council and the administration have been working to re-establish transit through a .08-mill levy which will appear on the May ballot.
If that levy is successful, Perrysburg Transit - the name of the service, which operated briefly this fall under the aegis of Ride Right LLC - is expected to begin almost immediately, funded by monies from the city's coffers which would be paid back by some of the levy funds. The levy would not bring money into the city until 2014, and would raise just shy of $460,000 per year during its five-year run.
The new service would include ADA-paratransit and call-a-ride offerings as well as morning and evening commuter routes.
The schedule as presented would call for 129 operational hours per week, spread between a full-time vehicle working 99 hours and a half-time vehicle taking on 30 hours. The full-time vehicle would be available for call-a-ride service Monday trough Friday from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Saturday from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.; and Sunday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. The half-time vehicle would offer a total of six hours a day Monday through Friday for commuters, and be available on weekends only as needed.
A $1 fee for a one-way trip is suggested.
Answering a question from transit supporter and Perrysburg 4 Transportation member Gil Lutz, HSPU Chair Todd Grayson noted that the vehicles, which are to be new, will include one shuttle and one minivan.
"The beauty of the system," said Ermie, "is as we learn more and more about the needs" of riders, they can be flexible and change the system to meet their needs.
In other business, the committee heard from Public Utilities Director Timothy Warren that the city plans to advertise bids for Phase 3 of the Wastewater Treatment Plant expansion in November. The entire project is expected to cost more than $10 million, and it is hoped that work could begin early in 2014.
"In this environment we're in right now, it's a good time to build," Warren said.
Additionally, the committee heard from Public Services Director Jon Eckel that more than 14,000 toters for the upcoming automated refuse system have been delivered, and the new refuse trucks are expected by the middle of next month. They plan to use a nearby subdivision to train personnel on the new system, which is to be premiered in April.