A company that is hoping to run a bus and cargo service through the Cariboo is urging people to contact the province’s Minister of Transportation and express the importance of having such a service available.
Director of Operations for Merritt Shuttle Bus Service Ltd. Gene Field said they’re still seeking to secure government funding.
“As long as we can get our license and hold onto it, we can figure out a way to come up with the money,” he said.
“We’re hoping that the funding will come in. We just might have to start later that’s all and unfortunately, that would mean we wouldn’t be able to service people for Christmas or the holidays.”
The Shuttle Service has until January 7, 2019, to get two buses licensed and insured which Field said he believes will not be difficult.
“That would save our license and that means we won’t lose it,” he said.
“So basically we just need to come up with some way of getting a certain amount of money to get the two buses to save our license and then it’s coming up with the rest of the money to be able to get the rest of the buses.”
Field said he can get a fleet of buses for $250,000.
There would be at least four buses for the Highland Valley Copper Mine and eight for the Shuttle Service with one each for express runs in Logan Lake, Spences Bridge, and Williams Lake. One bus would also offer express runs to Prince George, Langley, and Kelowna three days a week Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.
The other shuttle buses Field said would be used to go directly to Kamloops and Logan Lake on a daily basis. Pickup and drop off in Williams Lake would be at the Husky gas bar with cargo at the old U-Haul.
“The goal would be the 15th of December and I hate to keep pushing it back all the time but we’re kind of really having no choice in the matter. We just got to figure out a way to come up with the funding,” Field said noting that he will be speaking with his bank again and that they have to be careful who they have as an investor.
“The Passenger Transportation Board really wants us to be able to do it because they know how important it is for us to service the Cariboo region and also the whole Fraser Canyon so we’re quite adamant on getting this up and going.”