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FTAs New Charter Rules Presented by: Ohio Department of Transportation/Office of Transit Presenter: Rich Garrity, Senior Associate RLS & Associates, Inc.

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Presentation on theme: "FTAs New Charter Rules Presented by: Ohio Department of Transportation/Office of Transit Presenter: Rich Garrity, Senior Associate RLS & Associates, Inc."— Presentation transcript:

1 FTAs New Charter Rules Presented by: Ohio Department of Transportation/Office of Transit Presenter: Rich Garrity, Senior Associate RLS & Associates, Inc. April 24, 2008

2 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 2 of 95 Session Objectives 1. Define Key Terms and Applicability 2. Review Exceptions to Rule 3. Review New Registration Process 4. Understand Challenges and Complaints

3 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 3 of 95 Target Audience This Session is Designed for: Rural Transit Agencies Human Service Agencies Private Charter Operators Specialized Providers That May Enter the Rural Public Program

4 Key Definitions and Applicability Module 1

5 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 5 of 95 Effective Date Final Rule Issued on January 14, 2008 There are Significant Changes Rule Goes Into Effect on April 30, 2008

6 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 6 of 95 Significant Changes New Definition of Charter Categorical Exemption for Section 5311 if Service is for Program Purposes Other New Exemptions New Exceptions Registration Process Replaces Transit System Solicitation of Willing and Able Operators

7 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 7 of 95 Definition: Charter Service Transportation Provided By a Recipient At the Request of A Third Party For the Exclusive Use of a Bus or Van For a Negotiated Price Or…

8 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 8 of 95 Definition: Charter Service Transportation Provided By a Recipient To The Public for Events or Functions That Occur on An Irregular Basis or For a Limited Duration and: A Premium Fare Is Charged That Is Greater Than The Usual or Customary Fixed Route Fare; or The Service Is Paid For In Whole Or In Part By A Third Party

9 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 9 of 95 Definition: Charter Service Key Characteristics of Charter Service A Third Party Pays the Transit Provider a Negotiated Price For the Group Any Fares Charged To Individual Members of the Group Are Collected By a Third Party The Service Is Not Part of the Transit Providers Regularly Scheduled Service, or Is Offered For a Limited Period Of Time; A Third Party Determines the Origin and Destination and Trip Schedule

10 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 10 of 95 Definition: Charter Service Service Provided to Individuals in Demand Response Mode is Not Charter Service Under the New Regs

11 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 11 of 95 Applicability New Rule Applies to Recipients of FTA Financial Assistance Also Applies to Subrecipients and Third Party Contractors That Utilize FTA Funded Equipment Charter Certification Still Required

12 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 12 of 95 Exemptions from the Regulations There are Some Clear Exemptions From the Regulations

13 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 13 of 95 Exemptions from the Regulations: Transportation of Employees Transportation of Employees of the Transit System To/From Transit Facilities Within the Service Area Other Transit System Employees, Bidders or Contractors, or Other Governmental Officials Fall Under this Exemption

14 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 14 of 95 Exemptions From the Regulations: Emergency Preparedness Transportation of Employees of the Transit System To/From Emergency Preparedness Planning and Operation

15 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 15 of 95 Exemptions from the Regulations: Rural Training Nonurbanized Areas Transit Systems May Transport Their Own Employees, Other Transit System Employees, Transit Management Officials, and Transit Contractors and Bidders To/From Transit Training Outside Its Geographic Service Area

16 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 16 of 95 Exemptions from the Regulations: Private Sector Receiving FTA Funds If a Private Charter Operator Receives FTA Funding, Directly or Indirectly, Is Not Subject to the Rules on Its Non- FTA Funded Activities

17 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 17 of 95 Exemptions from the Regulations: National, State, and Local Emergencies Service Provided in Direct Response to an Emergency Declared By the President, a Governor, or a Mayor Service Provided in Direct Response to an Emergency Requiring Immediate Action Prior to a Formal Declaration Exemption Applies for 45 Days Beyond 45 Days, Permission Must be Granted by the FTA Administrator

18 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 18 of 95 Exemptions From the Regulations: Program Exemptions The Following FTA Programs are Exempt From the Regulations Section 5310 (Elderly and Persons with Disabilities Program) Section 5311 (Nonurbanized Area Program) Section 5316 (JARC Program) Section 5317 (New Freedom Program)

19 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 19 of 95 Exemptions From the Regulations: Program Exemptions This Exemption Only Applies if the System is Transporting Groups for Program Purposes

20 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 20 of 95 Exemptions From the Regulations: Program Exemptions Program Purposes Means Transportation That Serves the Needs of Either Human Service Agencies or Targeted Populations (Elderly, Individuals With Disabilities, and/or Low Income Individuals)

21 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 21 of 95 Exemptions From the Regulations: Program Exemptions Program Purposes Does Not Include Exclusive Service For Other Groups Formed for Purposes Unrelated to the Special Needs of the Targeted Populations

22 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 22 of 95 FTA Ombudsman Crystal Frederick Ombudsman for Charter Services Federal Transit Administration, 1200 New Jersey Ave., SE. Room E54–410 Washington, DC (202) 366–4063

23 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 23 of 95 Review FTA Questions and Responses

24 Exceptions to the Regulations Module 2

25 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 25 of 95 General If the Exemptions Listed in the Previous Module Do Not Apply, Your Organization is Subject to the Charter Regulations There are Also Exceptions to the Regulations Many Exceptions are Continuations of Exceptions in the Former Rule

26 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 26 of 95 Exceptions: Government Officials New Exception A Transit System May Provide Charter Service to Government Officials for Official Governmental Business Conditions Within Service Area Trip Does Not Generate Revenue Limited to 80 Hours Per Year

27 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 27 of 95 Exceptions: Government Officials Recordkeeping Required (See Appendix B of Guidebook) Transit System May Petition FTA Administrator Seeking Permission to Exceed 80 Hours Petitions Get Posted to a New Docket for Comment

28 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 28 of 95 Exceptions: Qualified Human Service Organization (QHSO) New Concept An Organization That Serves Persons Who Qualify For Human Service Program Funding (See Appendix A to the Regulation) An Organization That Provides Human Services to Individuals with Disabilities Individuals with Low Income Individual with Advanced Age (Elderly)

29 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 29 of 95 Exceptions: Qualified Human Service Organization (QHSO) A Human Service Agency is Categorically Assumed to be a QHSO if it Receives Funding Under the Standard List of Federal Programs Found in Appendix A of the Regulation If the Organization Does Not Receive Such Funding, Then it Must Register on a New FTA Website as a QHSO

30 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 30 of 95 Exceptions: Qualified Human Service Organization (QHSO) A Transit System May Provide Charter Service to a QHSO Recordkeeping Requirements

31 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 31 of 95 Exceptions: Leasing of Equipment/ Drivers A Transit System May Lease Its FTA Funded Equipment and Provide Drivers to a Registered Charter Provider Conditions Provider is Registered Provider Owns and Operates Buses and Vans in a Charter Business Provider Received a Request that Exceeds Its Capacity Provider Has Exhausted All Available Vehicles From Other Registered Private Charter Operators

32 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 32 of 95 Exceptions: Leasing of Equipment/ Drivers Recordkeeping Requirements Similar Information But Also Includes System Retention of the Private Charter Operators Documentation That the Four Conditions are Met

33 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 33 of 95 Exceptions: Agreements with Registered Private Charter Operators A Transit System May Negotiate with Registered Providers To Seek Permission to Provide Certain Charter Trips Agreements Must be Reached With All Providers If a New Provider Registers, the Transit System May Continue to Operator Under the Current Agreements With Operators An Agreement Must be Reached with the New Operator in 90 Days

34 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 34 of 95 Exceptions: Agreements with Registered Private Charter Operators A Transit System May Negotiate with Registered Providers To Seek Permission to Provide Certain Charter Trips Agreements Must be Reached With All Providers If a New Provider Registers, the Transit System May Continue to Operator Under the Current Agreements With Operators An Agreement Must be Reached with the New Operator in 90 Days

35 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 35 of 95 Exceptions: Petitions to the FTA Administrator A Transit System May Submit Requests (Petitions) to the FTA Administrator to Provide Charter Service Under Three Scenarios Events of Regional or National Significance Hardships (Nonurbanized Areas Only) Unique and Time Sensitive Events (e.g., Funerals of Local, Regional, or General Public Interest

36 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 36 of 95 Exceptions: Petitions to the FTA Administrator Petitions Are One-Time Events Petitions Must Indicate Date and Description of the Event Type of Service Requested and the Type of Equipment Anticipated Number of Charter Service Hours Needed For the Event Anticipated Number of Vehicles and Duration of The Event

37 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 37 of 95 Exceptions: Petitions to the FTA Administrator National Events Super Bowl Democratic National Convention Presidential Addresses System Must Also Provide A Description of How Registered Charter Providers Were Consulted Will Be Utilized System Must Certify That It Has Exhausted All of the Registered Charter Providers In Its Geographic Service Area

38 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 38 of 95 Exceptions: Petitions to the FTA Administrator Hardships Designed for Nonurbanized Areas Situations Where a Charter Operator Would Impose Minimum Duration or Similar Charges That Would Make the Cost Prohibitive to the Chartering Party This Exception Has Been Extended to Small Urbanized Areas (Under 200,000)

39 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 39 of 95 Exceptions: No Response To Notice A Transit System Is Permitted to Provide A Requested Charter Service If, After Providing Notice to All Registered Private Operators, There is No Response or Interest in Providing the Service Requests for Service Within 30 Days Response From Operators Due in 72 Hours Requests for Service Beyond 30 Days Response From Operators Due in 14 Calendar Days

40 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 40 of 95 Exceptions: No Response To Notice Notices Must Follow Prescribed Process Recordkeeping Requirements (See Appendix B to the Guidebook)

41 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 41 of 95 Recordkeeping New Electronic Reporting Requirement Quarterly Submission Effective July 30, 2008 Reports Filed at FTA Website All Charter Activity Records Retention Requirement: Three Years Electronic, But No Specific Format Specified A Single Log May Suffice

42 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 42 of 95 Recordkeeping If Any Charter Service Was Provided in the Quarter, a Clear Statement Identifying Which Exception The System Relied Upon When It Provided the Charter Service Must be Submitted to FTA

43 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 43 of 95 Review FTA Questions and Responses

44 FTA Registration Process Module 3

45 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 45 of 95 Registration Process A New, Web-Based Registration Process Replaces the Old Requirement for a Transit System to Annually Solicit the Interest of Willing and Able Operators Two Entities Register Private Charter Operators Qualified Human Service Organizations

46 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 46 of 95 Registration Home Page

47 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 47 of 95 Private Charter Operator Registration Website Address

48 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 48 of 95 Private Charter Operator Registration Website Options Register Amend a Previous Registration Search Private Charter Operators Database Search Qualified Human Service Organizations Database

49 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 49 of 95 Private Charter Operator Registration Self-Certification Process For Example, Proof of Insurance is Not Required Civil and Criminal Penalties, However, For Filing a False Registration

50 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 50 of 95 Private Charter Operator Registration Information Company Contact Information Federal and State Motor Carrier Numbers The Geographic Service Areas (Organized by Public Transit Agencies) In Which the Private Charter Operator Intends to Provide Charter Service The Number of Buses/Vans the Private Charter Operator Owns A Certification Regarding Valid Insurance Statement Regarding Whether the Operator is W to Provide Free or Reduced Rate Charter Service to Registered Qualified Human Service Organizations

51 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 51 of 95 Private Charter Operator Registration

52 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 52 of 95 Private Charter Operator Registration

53 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 53 of 95 Private Charter Operator Registration Challenges A Transit Agency Another Private Charter Operator Representatives of these Organizations Challenges Filed Through a Complaint Process

54 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 54 of 95 Private Charter Operator Registration Website Must Be Updated Whenever There is a Change, But No Less Frequently Than Once Every Two Years

55 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 55 of 95 Qualified Human Service Organization (QHSO) Registration A Human Service Agency That Receives Funding Under Any One of the Federal Programs Listed in Appendix A of the Regulation Does Not Have to Register If the Agency Does Not Receive Such Funding, But Serves the Elderly, Persons with Disabilities or Persons with Low Income, They Should Register If They Need Charter Services from a Public Transit System

56 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 56 of 95 Qualified Human Service Organization (QHSO) Registration Information Agency Contact Information The Geographic Service Areas (Organized by Public Transit Agencies) In Which the Agency Serves A Copy of the Most Recent Financial Statement Statement Indicating If the Agency is Organized as a Section 501(c) (1),(3), (4), or (19) Corporation of the Internal Revenue Code Statement Regarding Funding, Directly or Indirectly From a Federal or State Agency A Statement Describing the Charter Service Required and How That Service is C With the Mission of the Agency

57 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 57 of 95 Qualified Human Service Organization (QHSO) Registration

58 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 58 of 95 Qualified Human Service Organization (QHSO) Registration

59 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 59 of 95 Qualified Human Service Organization (QHSO) Registration Challenges A Transit Agency Another Private Charter Operator Representatives of these Organizations Challenges Filed Through a Complaint Process

60 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 60 of 95 Qualified Human Service Organization (QHSO) Registration Website Must Be Updated Whenever There is a Change, But No Less Frequently Than Once Every Two Years

61 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 61 of 95 How Public Transit Systems Use the Registration Database If An Organization Qualifies as a QHSO, Then the Transit Agency, Upon Request to Provide a Charter Service, Should Verify the Agencys QHSO Status on the Website If Registered, Then the Transit Agency May Provide the Service Pursuant to the Exception Allowed Under 49 CFR part Must Maintain Records

62 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 62 of 95 How Public Transit Systems Use the Registration Database Why Do We Need the Database? Section 5311 Systems Will Be Able to Serve Qualified Human Service Organizations Under The Exemption in 49 CFR part 604.2(e) Other FTA Recipients (e.g., Urban Formula Funds (Section 5307)) Will Use This Database

63 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 63 of 95 Decision Tree, Part 1

64 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 64 of 95 Decision Tree, Part 2

65 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 65 of 95 Review FTA Questions and Responses

66 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 66 of 95 Group Exercise Exercise – Can We Provide Charter Service? Review the Various Scenarios and Determine if The Transit Agency Can Provide the Requested Charter Service

67 Complaints and Enforcement Module 4

68 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 68 of 95 Overview New SAFETEA-LU Mandated Enforcement Mechanisms Registration Challenges Advisory Opinions Cease and Desist Orders Violation Complaints

69 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 69 of 95 Registration Challenges – Private Operators Challenging a Private Charter Operator Registration Required Information State the name and address of each entity who is the subject of the complaint; and A Concise Statement of Why the Private Charter Operator Should Not Be Listed

70 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 70 of 95 Registration Challenges – Private Operators Filing a Complaint is Electronic Process Filed to the Charter Service Removal Complaint docket number FTA–2007– 0024 at: Complaints Can Also Be Filed on Paper

71 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 71 of 95 Registration Challenges - QHSO Challenging a Qualified Human Service Organization Required Information State the name and address of each entity who is the subject of the complaint; and A Concise Statement of Why the QHSO Should Not Be Listed

72 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 72 of 95 Registration Challenges - QHSO Filing a Complaint is Electronic Process Filed to the Charter Service Removal Complaint docket number FTA–2007– 0024 at: Complaints Can Also Be Filed on Paper

73 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 73 of 95 Registration Challenges - QHSO Certification Required by Complainant Challenges Must be Filed Within 90 Days of the Complaining Party Discovering Facts That Merit Removal of the Registered Charter Provider from the FTA Charter Registration Website Agency Response Due in 15 Days After Challenge

74 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 74 of 95 Registration Challenges - FTA FTA Will Rule, Based on Preponderance of Evidence Bad Faith Fraud Lapse of Insurance Lapse of Other Documentation Repetitive Filing of Unsubstantiated

75 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 75 of 95 Registration Challenges - FTA FTA Will Rule Within 30 Days of Filing of Challenge Response Permit Registrant to Remain on List and Why Length of Time Off List if Removed (Up to Three Years)

76 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 76 of 95 Advisory Opinions A Written Statement Issued By the FTA Chief Counsel Regarding Whether A Service Is Being Provided In Compliance Or Not In Compliance With FTA Charter Rules A First Step That Establishes a Basis for Further Action, If Any

77 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 77 of 95 Advisory Opinions Represent Formal Position of FTA on Matter Advisory Opinions May be Accompanied by Issuance of a Cease and Desist Order

78 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 78 of 95 Advisory Opinions Requesting an Advisory Opinion Statement of Facts Affirmation Requests Filed Electronically Charter Service Advisory Opinion/Cease and Desist Order docket number FTA–2007– 0023 at:

79 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 79 of 95 Cease and Desist Orders A Written Order Issued By FTA Mandating That The Service In Question Provided By the Transit System Be Stopped Immediately ODOT Will Treat Advisory Opinions and Cease and Desist Orders as Compliance Items

80 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 80 of 95 Cease and Desist Orders Requests for Orders Must Contain: A Description of the Need for the Order A Detailed Description of the Lost Business Opportunity A Description of How The Public Interest Will Be Served A Detailed Description of the Efforts Made to Notify the Transit System of the Potential Violation

81 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 81 of 95 Cease and Desist Orders – Transit System Response Response Required in Three Business Days Point-by-Point Rebuttal Should be Supplied

82 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 82 of 95 Violation Complaints Formal Process Private Operator Complaint Transit System Answer Private Operator Reply Transit System Rebuttal Specified Timelines for Each Step in Process

83 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 83 of 95 Violation Complaints

84 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 84 of 95 Violation Complaints FTA May Dismiss a Complaint Outside FTAs Jurisdiction Complaint Deemed Unwarranted Lack of Legal Standing of Complainant Party

85 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 85 of 95 Violation Complaints - Investigation FTA, If Merit is Found in the Violation Complaint, Will Conduct Investigation FTA May Seek Additional Facts from Both Parties FTA May Initiate an Investigation Without a Formal Complaint

86 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 86 of 95 Violation Complaints - Investigation FTA May Appoint a Presiding Officer to Oversee the Complaint Investigation and to Conduct Formal Hearings on the Matter Judicial Rights Accorded to Both Parties Legal Representation Right to Have a Hearing Right to Present Testimony

87 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 87 of 95 Violation Complaints - Investigation Presiding Officer (PO) Submits Findings and Recommendations to FTA Chief Counsel Within 110 Days of Referral Requested Extensions May Delay Ruling

88 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 88 of 95 Violation Complaints - Appeals A Party May Appeal the Chief Counsels Decision by Filing Notice of Appeal Within 21 Days FTA Administrator Rules Within 30 Days of Appeal FTA Administrator Has Discretionary Authority to Review All Decisions

89 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 89 of 95 Violation Complaints - Appeals If An Appeal Is Not Filed, the Chief Counsels Decision Takes Effect as FTAs Final Decision and Order 21 Days After the Date of the Chief Counsels Decision Failure to File an Appeal Is Deemed a Waiver of Any Rights to Seek Judicial Review of the Chief Counsels Decision

90 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 90 of 95 Violation Complaints - Remedies Violation Complaints, if Substantiated, May Result in Serious Penalties Imposed on Transit System Bar Transit System From Receiving Future FTA Financial Assistance Withholding of a Percentage of FTA Financial Assistance Suspension/Debarment

91 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 91 of 95 Additional Resources 49 CFR part 604 Appendix B to 49 CFR part 604 Basis for Removal From Charter Registration Website Appendix B to 49 CFR part 604 Charter Service Questions and Answers

92 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 92 of 95 Additional Resources Transit Agency Fact Sheet _Charter_Service_Final_Rule.ppt Private Charter Operators Fact Sheet al_Rule-Private_Operator_Fact_Sheet.ppt

93 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 93 of 95 Review FTA Questions and Responses

94 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 94 of 95 Adjourn Good Luck in Using This Information at Your Own Transit Programs

95 FTAs New Charter Regulations Page 95 of 95 Presenter Richard Garrity, Senior Associate RLS & Associates, Inc S. Dixie Highway, Suite 545 Dayton, OH (937) Direct Line: (910)


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