clear
Tuesday August 4th, 2015 3:31AM

HCC wants G'ville to ask for Red Rabbit grant

By Jerry Gunn Reporter
GAINESVILLE - Hall County Commissioners said Monday they're looking at an intergovernmental agreement that would allow the City of Gainesville to apply for federal operations funding for the Red Rabbit bus service.

When the Commission met two weeks ago they rejected the funding grant application for nearly $400,000, 50 percent of the money needed to run the buses. Commissioners want the city to apply for the funds and also assume the liability for operating the service according to Chairman Dick Mecum.

"I think primarily what we're looking at is an agreement," Mecum said. "The Department of Transportation is saying it would be permissible for Gainesville now to apply for the funds for Red Rabbit. If Gainesville applies for it and does this week that's basically what we'll be voting on Thursday."

Mecum added the agreement includes giving Gainesville the existing buses plus seven new buses which the Commission approved separately two weeks ago.

"What we're trying to do is keep it rolling without any interruption," Mecum said.

County Grants Manager Jessica Robinson said GDOT would be willing to hear what the city and county have to say about bus operations.

"It doesn't matter who applies for the grant in retrospect when it's just a determination of what the city and county agree upon," Robinson said. "We'll definitely know something on Thursday."

Appearing before the Board was My Sister's Place Managing Director Brandee Thomas.

"We are a homeless shelter in Gainesville serving women and mothers with children," Thomas told commissioners. "We have been providing a fresh start for residents for the last 13 years and a key to that fresh start is securing and maintaining employment that requires transportation."

Thomas said in the past year only two of 50 shelter guests had their own vehicle and that means dependence of Red Rabbit Transit.

"The position that you all take concerning funding for the Red Rabbit isn't just about agreements between governments," Thomas added. "It's about impacting the lives of Hall County's residents. Our residents aren't looking for hand-outs, they're looking for opportunities made possible by access to public transportation."

Thomas asked commissioners not to take action that would 'cripple Hall's public transportation system and lead to the elimination of the Red Rabbit'. Commissioners also heard appeals from four 'My Sister's Place' residents, including Rosanna Hope Bisbing.

"I don't know what I will do if the line is eliminated," Bisbing said. "I need the bus line to get my family back together and in our own home."

Bisbing said she has talked to other passengers who ride the bus, people who are disabled and people on fixed incomes that don't have a personal vehicle.

"We as a community need to keep the Red Rabbit running for everyone in the community," she concluded.
© Copyright 2015 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Missing Ga. bank director arrested in Brunswick
A bank director accused of losing millions of investors' dollars before vanishing last year was arrested Tuesday during a traffic stop in a city in south Georgia.
7:00PM ( 1 year ago )
S&P 500 index has its best year since 1997
The stock market closed out a record year with more all-time highs on Tuesday, giving U.S. indexes their biggest annual gains in almost two decades.
6:56PM ( 1 year ago )
Colorado readies for 'Green Wednesday' pot sales
Police were adding extra patrols around pot shops in eight Colorado towns that plan to allow recreational sales to anyone over 21 on Jan. 1.
1:52PM ( 1 year ago )
Business News
Sex offender held in Hall County for failing to register
A 47-year-old man was booked into the Hall County Jail Tuesday, being held without bond for allegedly failing to register as a sex offender, his second such arrest.
6:09PM ( 1 year ago )
Pharmacy robberies may involve same suspect
Oakwood Police Tuesday afternoon released details in a pharmacy robbery they're investigating, similar to one that happened in the Hall County Tuesday morning.
5:46PM ( 1 year ago )
Victim critical following apartment fire
A 41-year-old woman was in critical but stable condition Tuesday after being rescued from an apartment fire in Forsyth County late Monday afternoon.
3:16PM ( 1 year ago )
Local/State News
Medicaid growth creates gap of 5M without coverage; 409K in Ga.
About 5 million people will be without health care next year that they would have gotten simply if they lived somewhere else in America.
7:30AM ( 1 year ago )
Vandals spray graffiti against Kerry in West Bank
Suspected Jewish vandals set fire to three vehicles in a West Bank village early on Tuesday and sprayed threatening graffiti referring to U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry ahead of his expected visit to the region, police said.
7:28AM ( 1 year ago )
Feds announce test sites for drone aircraft
The Federal Aviation Administration announced six states on Monday that will develop test sites for drones, a critical next step for the march of the unmanned aircraft into U.S. skies.
2:23PM ( 1 year ago )
Politics
Structural issues delay Clarkesville downtown redevelopment
Clarkesville leaders learned Monday night the downtown redevelopment planned for the east side of the Clarkesville Square will be delayed due to structural issues.
11:05PM ( 4 hours ago )
US consumer spending edges up in June
Consumer spending in June rose by the smallest amount in four months as shoppers cut back on purchases of cars and other big-ticket items.
By Associated Press
11:23AM ( 16 hours ago )
Climate change: Obama orders steeper emissions cuts from power plants
Aiming to jolt the rest of the world to action, President Barack Obama moved ahead Sunday with even tougher greenhouse gas cuts on American power plants.
By The Associated Press
6:40PM ( 1 day ago )
20+ employers expected for Blairsville job fair Tuesday
More than 20 employers have signed up to participate in the North Georgia Regional Career Expo in Blairsville Tuesday. The job fair will be held from 2-6 p.m. on the Blairsville campus of North Georgia Technical College.
7:03PM ( 2 days ago )
Atlanta airport again leads in number of guns found in bags
Atlanta's airport once again leads the nation in the number of guns found in carry-on bags.
By The Associated Press
6:49PM ( 2 days ago )