Pictured, County Executive Vince Horrigan (right) presents CARTS Senior Project Coordinator Michele Westphal with a certificate in recognition of CARTS’ 40 years of service to the community.
JAMESTOWN, N.Y.:-- On June 9, 2017 the Chautauqua Area Regional Transit System (CARTS) held an open house and invited community members, leaders, and organizations to help celebrate 40 years of dedicated service to Chautauqua County residents. Guests were treated to complimentary refreshments, give-a-ways, and other special offers.
“Our staff has really been looking forward to and preparing this event all year,” said Michele Westphal, Senior Project Coordinator for CARTS. “We think it is important to celebrate the past and honor those who have helped us to reach where we are today, while looking towards the future and everything that we hope to accomplish over the next 40 years. The event was very well attended and there were many staff members and drivers, both past and present, who took this opportunity to connect with the customers that we serve in a manner different than the normal interactions when they are riding the bus.”
One of the guest speakers included Chautauqua County Executive Vince Horrigan, who presented certificates to CARTS driver Art Jarosynski, CARTS dispatcher Ginny Johnson, and NY Connects/OFA representative Rebecca Byczynski for following their “gut feelings” when one of the regular riders with CARTS was not waiting outside for his pick-up. The driver, Art Jarosynski became concerned with the gentleman’s absence and knocked on his door, but there was no answer. Art called the CARTS Office to report the incident to dispatcher Ginny Johnson who then called Rebecca Byczynski at NY Connects/ Office for the Aging for assistance in contacting the gentleman. When no one answered his home phone, Rebecca contacted the Jamestown Police Department to have a police officer dispatched to the gentleman’s house. The gentleman was then found on the floor, where he had been for approximately four hours.
“Thanks to the concern and teamwork of these three employees, the gentleman was able to receive the medical attention that he needed,” said Horrigan.
Other guest speakers included County Legislature Chairman David Himelein, County Legislator Lisa Vanstrom, County Public Facilities Director George Spanos, and County Office of the Aging Director MaryAnn Spanos, all of whom voiced their support of the CARTS system, and their appreciation for the services that CARTS provides to the residents of the County.
“Over the past 40 years, CARTS has striven to provide the highest quality of transportation services to all citizens and guests of Chautauqua County, while remaining committed to meeting the many needs of our customers, and recognizing the diversity of the individuals and communities we serve,” said Cory Leymeister, Resource Assistant. “And the staff here at CARTS is really looking forward to continuing to carry out this mission in a cost-efficient manner and by fostering a team environment with an emphasis on safety, training, communication, customer service, and a commitment to continuous improvement in the many years to come.”
“On behalf of the CARTS staff, I would like to thank the legislators and staff who built the CARTS system up from an idea; as well as the community organizations like Chautauqua Opportunities, the Office of the Aging, The Resource Center, and the many others who have help shape CARTS into what it is today,” said Brenda Swan, Resource Assistant. “And finally, to thank the riders and the public for their continued support and dedication, because without them, we would not be here to help them get to where they need to go, all the while enduring to provide the same Courteous And Reliable Transportation Service that our riders have come to know and expect.”