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Strong collaboration between government departments and nonprofits is needed to address the unexpected termination of subsidized transportation help for hundreds of elderly and disabled residents in the Omaha area.

Officials learned in mid-May that existing boundaries for the service are no longer in compliance with federal guidelines in Douglas, Sarpy, Cass, Dodge and Washington Counties. The program, offered for more than 30 years, is funded in part by federal grants distributed through the Nebraska Department of Transportation.

The federal rules must be respected, but the need remains. The program provided more than 19,000 one-way rides over the past fiscal year.

The state Department of Transportation says it’s exploring options. Coordination between government and nonprofits will be key to solutions, short term and long term.

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