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Produced & Maintained by Idaho Mountain Express, Box 1013, Ketchum, ID 83340-1013 
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For the week of April 24 - 30, 2002

  News

Peak-hour bus reaches goal for funding


By TRAVIS PURSER
Express Staff Writer

The peak-hour commuter bus service planned to run between Bellevue and Ketchum, but delayed for months due to lack of money, appears to have the funding it needs to operate for four months, beginning June 1.

Blaine County Commissioners Dennis Wright and Sarah Michael both said Monday they would vote to increase county funding of the bus from $5,000 to $10,000. That amount, added to money contributed by Sun Valley, Ketchum, businesses and the federal government, would total $46,000, the amount needed for the bus to operate from June 1 to Sept. 30.

The commission, however, did not vote on the funding increase during its meeting Monday, because Chairwoman Mary Ann Mix was absent. Commissioner Dennis Wright said Mix would likely support the increase, though the measure could pass two-to-one even without her support.

The commission must also decide whether to award a contract to Sun Valley Express or to Trans IV Buses, of Twin Falls, to provide a bus for the service. Both companies have submitted bid proposals.

A contract should be negotiated by May 13, Michael said.

To continue operating through the fiscal year that begins Oct. 1, the bus service needs another $130,000 to $160,000, Michael said. Bus advocates are looking to cities, businesses, grants, fares and the county for that amount.

Plans call for the bus to run three times each morning and evening with stops in Bellevue, Hailey and Ketchum to give commuters an alternative to single-occupancy vehicles.

 


The Idaho Mountain Express is distributed free to residents and guests throughout the Sun Valley, Idaho resort area community. Subscribers to the Idaho Mountain Express will read these stories and others in this week's issue.