Marion Rochester Health District gets new set of wheels

By Georgia Sparling | Sep 29, 2016
Photo by: Georgia Sparling/www.graphicsfuel.com Health Director Karen Walega's new electric Kia Sole gives her an eco-friendly way to travel in Marion and Rochester.

Karen Walega, health director for the Marion Rochester Health District, puts in a lot of miles performing health inspections across the two towns, and until recently, she only had an old Town Car that was “very old and very tired.”

Recently, however, Walega secured a new, eco-friendly set of wheels with a grant from the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection.

“It took a lot of perseverance,” Walega said.

The towns of Marion and Rochester have received grants for electric vehicles, but Walega said she had to get paperwork from the IRS and go through the Secretary of State before securing the grant.

There are a number of electric vehicles on the market, but after sitting in the Marion Council on Aging’s Kia Soul, Walega decided it was a great option for her purposes.

Walega said the Kia Soul can go 109 miles on one charge, so she plugs it in every day at the Marion charging station. Rochester will also have its own charging station soon.

“It’s really fantastic,” Walega said of the new car. “I’m on the road a lot. It’s just wonderful to have.”

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