Rose Hill Senior Center bus grant

The City of Dothan is attempting to get a grant that will replace the buses it uses for Rose Hill Senior Center programs.

After 12 years and 90,000 miles of usage, two Rose Hill Senior Center buses will be retired if Dothan Leisure Services obtains a grant officials hope for.

The Dothan City Commission will consider a request to submit the grant application to the Alabama Department of Transportation Tuesday. If awarded the grant, the city will likely purchase buses similar to the 15- and 21-passenger vehicles it already operates at Rose Hill, said Leisure Services assistant director for programs Roy Kitts.

Since the grant requires a 20 percent match, the city could pay up to $27,189 for its share of the buses.

The buses are vital to the center as they provide transportation to and from the facility for seniors who cannot drive themselves, said Debbie Reed, Rose Hill Senior Center’s manager. The center offers recreational and social opportunities, which help improve participants’ quality of life.

“It benefits them health-wise and helps them have active, productive lives,” she said. “We don’t have a lot of (public) transportation in Dothan. We really rely on those buses.”

The center also uses the buses for field trips, and they also serve as a backup option for the homebound food delivery program when the center’s vans are unavailable, Reed noted.

The center operates two different styles of bus for a couple of reasons, Kitts said.

The larger bus contains a wheelchair lift but has less agility – which can be challenging in some neighborhoods. The buses are assigned to various areas based on center’s participants’ needs, Kitts said.

The city is not guaranteed to receive the grant since it is competitive, but previous recipients do gain some favorable consideration, Kitts said.

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