Pulaski County Human Services will be able to get a new van, thanks to some financial help from the county. The county council recently approved the transfer of $7,000 out of the Community Development Commission’s Land Acquisition line item, to help cover the local match.
Human Services Executive Director Jacki Frain said it will replace a vehicle that has reached the end of its useful life. “It’ll hold eight people and two wheelchairs, so that we can have more people on at the same time,” she told council members. “Our smaller vans only hold four people, and it’s not necessarily comfortable because they’re not very big.”
But the funding was not without some opposition. Council Member Rudy DeSabatine, who voted against the transfer, questioned why Human Services has eight vehicles in service but only four-and-a-half drivers. Frain explained that some of the vehicles are for Head Start transportation while others are public transit vans, and drivers are often assigned to vehicles from both fleets.
She said the total cost of the new van will be more than $49,000. The bulk of that will be covered by state transportation grant funding distributed to the Kankakee-Iroquois Regional Planning Commission. In addition to that and the county funding, Frain said about $3,000 has been raised in private donations.
The county council also agreed to transfer another $25,000 out of the CDC’s Land Acquisition money to pay fiscal planning consultant Jeffrey Peters. CDC Executive Director Nathan Origer explained the transfer had been approved last year, but since the planning process has taken longer than expected, it had to be redone.