West Central Mass Transit temporarily suspending operations as of Saturday

By Ryne Turke on October 14, 2016 at 12:08pm

Transportation services for West Central Mass Transit will be temporarily suspended as of the end of business on Saturday.

Executive Director Jean Jumper says West Central Mass Transit’s board of directors made that tough decision earlier this week. Jumper says the transportation service, which has been shuttling residents around Morgan, Cass, Scott, Schuyler, Brown and Pike County since 2004, is dealing with cash flow issues.

In addition to those problems, grant funding from the State of Illinois won’t be coming in until December at the earliest.

Jumper says West Central Mass Transit will suspend services until grant funds are received and financial obligations can be met.

“We do believe the money is coming in and it will be sooner rather than later. We do not have the cash flow to run. We can’t spend money that we don’t have. That is not our work ethic so we aren’t going to do that. We will be up and running again, but I just don’t have a date at this particular time.”

Jumper feels it wouldn’t be fair to the vendors, staff and customers to continue service when money isn’t available.

Jumper says the timing is unfortunate because West Central Mass Transit has been extremely busy in 2016.

“There is nothing more hurtful to me and my staff than the fact that we know we have customers that rely on us. There is nothing my staff has talked about since getting the notices except how in the world can we do something different for our customers. Those are the people that we have on our minds right now. We are going to continue to fight through this and get back as soon as we can, because we know we have people that rely on us. Those are the people we are concerned about.”

West Central Mass Transit District is awaiting payment of two IDOT approved requisitions currently at the comptroller’s office totaling $696,620.00.