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posted: 11/2/2013 4:40 AM

Standing by Rutland in Sun City bus flap

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Recently there has been considerable press coverage of Grafton and Rutland townships' dissension over the funding of the Sun City bus service. For those who don't know, part of Sun City is located in Rutland Township and part in Grafton Township.

About six years ago, the Grafton Township board unilaterally chose to offer subsidized bus service to their Sun City residents. Apparently they felt it appropriate to include those living in the Rutland Township portion of Sun City, too -- their decision alone.

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It appears that the program has been running a substantial deficit since inception and three months ago Grafton Supervisor Kearns issued an ultimatum to the Rutland Board that they would cease service to Rutland Sun City residents unless Rutland contributed a portion determined by the Grafton Board.

The Rutland Board was uncomfortable with that because it would service only Sun City residents and they have no eligibility requirements i.e. disability, financial etc. The Rutland board wanted time to consider other options, costs, liability, insurance, etc. They also wanted to determine if bus service is even the responsibility of township government.

The new Grafton board has voted to discontinue service to Sun City Rutland residents effective Nov. 30 because Rutland does not contribute to the subsidies although Huntley contributes $10,000 to provide for the Rutland residents. Rutland had no input and declined joining the program in the past because of the cost to the entire township to provide service for a select few.

As a 25-year resident of Rutland Township, I am proud to say that because of the prudent management of our tax dollars by current and previous boards, we are solvent.

Donna Tessendorf

Rutland Township

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