As COVID-19 vaccines become more available for the senior population, the city of Dixon wants to ensure that as many of its older residents get vaccinated as possible.
One avenue is through a resolution to authorize the Readi-Ride transit service to transport senior residents to receive the vaccine, even in areas out of town. The City Council will be considering that at its Tuesday meeting.
According to a staff report by Deputy Public Works Director Louren Kotow, the idea came about when the city was recently made aware of an opportunity for seniors 75 and older or Sutter Health members to receive the vaccine in Vacaville. However, due to a short turnaround to confirm availability, the city was unable to take advantage of this opportunity, Kotow wrote.
However, the city is not giving up. Should another opportunity come up for seniors to get vaccinated, staff are seeking pre-approval to use Readi-Ride to transport seniors to any potential sites.
Staff is recommending that any potential transportation for senior vaccinations be done outside Readi-Ride’s normal operating hours so as to not disrupt normal service for Dixon residents. Since Readi-Ride typically operates 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays, suggested times include weekends and 5 to 8 p.m. weekdays.
Additionally, Kotow wrote that no more than two passengers will be permitted to be transported at any one time, due to COVID-19 protocols. She also emphasized that administration of the service “would be contingent on-ground coordination,” part of which would include eligibility as well as a community advocate to register for an appointment. The city would also need to provide notice to mobilize 48 hours in advance.
The program would also be dependent on which drivers are available, Kotow wrote. Per the report, six drivers have expressed a willingness to work weekday evening shifts, and five have expressed a desire to work on weekends. All would be operating at overtime rates.
To allow this transportation to be made possible, the staff is requesting the council create a fund for the program, which would transfer $5,000 once opportunities for vaccines become available to allow for up to 48 trips and 96 senior residents to receive the vaccine. Alternative suggestions include charging fares for the service or utilizing contractor-based transportation systems instead of staff drivers.
In other business, the council will consider a resolution allowing for an application to be submitted requesting Community Development Block Grant funding to expand the city’s Small Business Support Program. The council will also consider Mayor Steve Bird’s recommendations to fill the two Planning Commission positions that were vacated following Don Hendershot and Kevin Johnson’s elections to the City Council.
The council will meet at 7 p.m. Tuesday.
The meeting can be accessed via Zoom at Us02web.zoom.us/j/9886211137?pwd=R2dxZ3RkbU9SQXdlUVllRkc0QlQwZz09 and by teleconference at 669-900-9128. The meeting ID is 988 621 1137, and the passcode is 604754. Members of the public may comment by using the “Raise Hand” feature on Zoom or by pressing *9 when teleconferencing.
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