Serving the Big Horn Basin for over 100 years

Trying to get out of the weather

Worland Senior Citizens Center raising money for new garage

WORLAND – The Worland Senior Citizens Center has been working for about three years to raise money for a new four-bay garage, to be placed across the parking lot from the center, to get their public transportation vehicles out of the weather.

“I’m hoping by this spring we will start doing something, hopefully we will have it up next summer,” Worland Senior Citizens Center Executive Director Wendy Fredricks said.

The center received grant approval on Sept. 7, 2017. Fredricks stated that the grant will cover 80 percent of the project cost and that the center needs to come up with the other 20 percent. “We have about $12,556.50 that is earmarked for the garage project that we have received through donations. The total amount of the project, what we got through grants, they are going to pay up to $192,000 so we have to come up with $48,000,” she said.

“What we are trying to do is get our vehicles out of the weather. They will last longer, it will be more cost effective because we won’t have to have our staff here a half an hour early. The issue is, this winter actually hasn’t been that bad, but those ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) doors, how they are, the water just kind of gets under there and it freezes those doors, so we have actually had to shut trans down for a bit [at times] because we can’t [thaw] those doors and then if they yank them they break them. So we have more maintenance cost because of just the weather,” Fredricks said.

The center is also trying to purchase a new van to replace a van that is no longer able to be used, Fredricks said. She explained that the Wyoming Department of Transportation has certain criteria that must be met to be able use the vehicles for public transportation. She stated that the vehicles must be kept in good working order and as the vehicles age they tend to wear out.

Fredricks stated that she will try to do whatever she can to make sure that the new garage is cost effective.

Once the center gets the new garage and van Fredricks stated that she would like to change the name of the center’s transportation program. “We are going to try to come up with a name separate from the senior center because so many people, they see those vans running around and they just think it’s for seniors and it’s not, its public transportation, we take kids to school.”

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