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Missoula County contracts transportation, security services for Sleepy Inn shelter

Posted at 8:51 PM, May 19, 2020

MISSOULA — Missoula County commissioners signed a number of contracts on Tuesday to provide transportation services and security at the city’s non-congregant shelter off West Broadway.

The city purchased the former motel earlier this month for $1.3 million, with operational expenses to be reimbursed by FEMA. Those costs include two transportation contracts signed on Tuesday and a third contract to provide security at the site.

During regular business hours, Medi Cab of Missoula will provide transportation to the shelter for those needing to quarantine or isolate and have no other means to get there.

“What we find is that an individual goes in for a test, primarily at a clinic or hospital,” said Adriane Beck, director of Disaster and Emergency Services for the county. “Once they receive the (COVID-19) test, that’s when they fall into the health officer’s order of needing to isolate or quarantine, but oftentimes they don’t have the physical ability to get themselves to the non-congregant shelter.”

Under the terms of the contract, Missoula County will provide $200 per week for on-call service and a base $25 transport fee. If Medi Cab is required to wait longer than three minutes, it will add a $1 per minute cost.

“They’re very much like a traditional taxi cab service, but they specialize in bringing people to the doctor’s appointments and people who may have some functional needs to get to and from the hospital in a non-emergent setting,” Beck said.

Missoula County also contracted Missoula Emergency Services Inc. to provide transportation after hours. The contract includes a base transport fee of $275 and $8.86 per loaded mile.

“We have looked at other alternatives but other cabs and Uber-type things weren’t willing to work in a guaranteed response component,” Beck said. “Missoula Emergency Services Inc, the local ambulance service, will provide that function after hours.”

Commissioners also contracted Black Knight on Tuesday to provide security at the site. The contract includes $30 per hour per officer, or $45 on holidays. Overtime also includes a $45 rate.

As of Monday, four people were quarantined at the shelter, according to county officials.

“They’ve been very good to work with,” Beck said of Black Knight. “They understand our protocols and what we’ve asked of them.”