Rural Office of Community Services, Inc. (ROCS) has hired a driver and purchased two vehicles to provide rides in Elk Point, Jefferson and North Sioux City.
Executive Director Peter Smith said it’s something ROCS has seen a need for, but just now obtained the funding to implement the service. ROCS has been operating in Union County for nearly 40 years, with a base in Beresford. Now they have one full-time driver, Dianne Jungemann, and two part-time drivers, Dave Fuehrer and Nancy Fuehrer. All three live in Jefferson.
They will drive either a 14-passenger bus with lift that is ADA-compliant or a seven-passenger van, with curb-to-curb service. Those vehicles will provide local service (Elk Point, Jefferson and North Sioux City) at no cost to those 60 and older. Younger riders will pay a nominal fee, probably less than $3, according to Smith.
The service is available for all ages, from preschool on up. The buses would run from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Smith said most of the rides are for medical appointments.
Riders can also be taken to Sioux City, Sioux Falls or Vermillion, with a cost to be determined. Smith said ROCS is not a taxi service; his drivers need 24-hour notice to guarantee the ride. However, they may be available on shorter notice if no other rides are scheduled.
North Sioux City is allowing the drivers to use an office space in city hall until a permanent bus barn is located. Buses will be parked in the city hall parking lot.
See full story in this week’s Leader-Courier.