Ingonish pilot taxi service a success
Victory County Deputy Warden and District #6 Councillor Larry Dauphinee has dug deeper into his budget to support what is turning out to be a successful pilot taxi service in Ingonish.
Dauphinee put aside $1000 from his district budget to fund the pilot taxi service which launched Oct. 30 using Ingonish’s Ingo Cab.
“I’m into my second thousand now,” said Dauphinee. “I think I have a little bit of money left in my budget which I'll be putting into it. That will probably be the final amount for now, until I get other funding.”
Dauphinee says there are 15-20 people who regularly use the service, all of whom are residents that really need this type of support.
“I'd say the biggest impact has been with appointments to the doctors in Neil's Harbour. There's also been three or four... maybe five trips to Sydney for medical appointments.”
Ride-sharing has been encouraged to make the most of the funding, and taxi users are happy to oblige. Seniors have accompanied others on trips to Sydney to get some much-needed shopping done.
Locally, the service has helped riders save money on groceries. They can now travel to a full grocery store rather than pay a premium at the convenience store.
Dauphinee has been pooling the positive feedback from riders and the local community and will share it with Council on Jan. 8. The North of Smokey Food Bank Association has already expressed their gratitude for Dauphinee’s initiative.
“Just wanted to send along a thank you for your part in initiating the taxi service program North of Smokey. Proof that the service is being utilized and is much needed was evident today when 3 of our food bank clients used the service to pick up their food hampers,” wrote Kim Stockley, Secretary/treasurer of the North of Smokey Food Bank Association in an email to Daphinee.