CABL offers needed service; expansions will be beneficial

There are many benefits to living in a small town or a rural area: communities are close-knit, crime rates are low and traffic jams are rare.

However, there are also challenges and access to public transportation is one of them.

We’re glad to see Washington-Morgan Community Action working to expand the options in Washington County and hope the requested funding for doing so goes through. The agency hopes to tack on extra hours to its existing CABL routes around Marietta and to offer routes in the county with the purchase of mini-vans. The county routes would be a demand-response service, where residents would call in and be picked up the next day.

Currently there are fixed routes once a week to both New Matamoras and Belpre, but surely there are other residents in different parts of the county who have need for transportation to go to doctor’s appointments, the store or even to go enjoy a play or local performance.

In a time when many of us take our cars for granted, it’s easy to forget there are people who can’t drive due to physical limitations or age and those who can’t afford their own vehicles and all the expenses that go along with them. If you live in a major city without a car, you can still get everywhere fairly easily. In southeastern Ohio, that’s not the case.

These transportation expansions would be a big benefit to our community. We hope the Ohio Department of Transportation recognizes that and approves the funding, and that our local leaders continue to think of new ways to improve the system we have in place.