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The new Person Area Transportation System director has gone from saving lives to managing transportation services for Personians.
“I worked for Person County EMS for about two years and eight months, mostly as a compliance officer,” said Public Transportation Director Glen LaBar.
LaBar is a New York native who relocated down south to continue his career in the emergency medical service field.
He became the new PATS director in November 2018, replacing former director Kathy Adcock.
“It is a new adventure, but I like the difficulty of coming into something new,” said LaBar.According to LaBar, he is happy to still work with the county and serve familiar faces from the community.
He currently oversees a staff a full-time staff of seven along with several part-time employees. He also stays busy managing grants, developing and implementing transportation services for riders who use PATS.
“Effective this week, we just added a route to Hillsborough. When I assessed the community and talked to people the one thing they mentioned multiple times was that a lot of people go to Hillsborough,” said LaBar.
His plans for the new year included this new route for riders. He stated numerous people travel to Hillsborough fortheir medical appointments, so PATS decided to adda stop to make sure needed services are provided.
PATS is working to develop a computer-based system and add new equipment such as iPads or tablets to the buses for better managing their routing schedules.
“We’ll hopefully get a new software system that will help maximize efficiency and make it where folks can maybe have electronic vouchers so they don’t have to always carry cash. It has been one of our biggest hurdles within the month that I’ve been here, trying to make sure people don’t have to carry cash all the time,” He said.
LaBar has big plans for 2019 to increase PATS visibility and ridership in the community.
For starters, he hopes to change the name of the Uptown Shuttle to the Roxboro Shuttle, add more stops to increase their number of passengers, and possibly start operating on Saturdays and some holidays.
“I would like us to be a well-recognized transportation organization that has a good reputation and provide service to the community that is needed. My goal is to make us financially sound and make it where every year we see people continuously riding and ev-erybody knows about us and what we have to offer. I don’t know if everybody knows that right now, so that is our goal to get that word out to folks because we know there are a lot of people in Person County who don’t have transportation,” he said.
PATS is a county-based transportation service that provides transportation to the citizens of Person County through subscription, demand and fixed transportation services for clients. Subscription service offers riders regular pick up unless you call PATS and request otherwise. Demand services are much like calling a taxi for those who may need an occasional ride.
To use PATS, you must call 336.597.1771, visit the county web-site at personcounty.net or the PATS office at 341 S. Madison Blvd. to register.