An Act To Improve Transit Services Statewide
Sec. 1. 5 MRSA §12004-I, sub-§82-A is enacted to read:
|Transportation: Public Transit||Public Transit Advisory Council||Not Authorized||23 MRSA §4209-A|
Sec. 2. 23 MRSA §4209, sub-§1, as amended by PL 2009, c. 130, §1, is further amended to read:
Sec. 3. 23 MRSA §4209, sub-§1-A, as enacted by PL 2009, c. 130, §2, is repealed.
Sec. 4. 23 MRSA §4209, sub-§2, as amended by PL 2009, c. 130, §3, is further amended to read:
In years in which no biennial quinquennial plan is required, amendments to the effective operations may be submitted. Approval of each locally coordinated plan for regional operations plan transit must be by the Department of Transportation department in collaboration with transit stakeholders, including transportation providers, social service organizations, the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Labor, the United States Department of Transportation, Federal Transit Administration and the committee Public Transit Advisory Council under section 4209-A. Upon approval, all agencies, groups or organizations named to participate in the provision of service in accordance with a locally coordinated plan for regional operations plan transit are eligible to receive funds administered by the Department of Transportation department and the Department of Health and Human Services.
Sec. 5. 23 MRSA §4209, sub-§3, as amended by PL 1991, c. 859, §1, is further amended to read:
The department may enter into a request for proposals process for grants to nonprofit organizations for innovative regional projects that reflect the priorities in subsection 2, paragraph B, involve and integrate multiple service providers and modes of transportation and address service gaps identified as priorities in regional or state planning.
Sec. 6. 23 MRSA §4209, sub-§4, as amended by PL 2009, c. 130, §4, is further amended to read:
The Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Labor shall ensure that any new service to be provided is adequately funded to cover the costs of the transportation component of the program.
Sec. 7. 23 MRSA §4209, sub-§5, as enacted by PL 1979, c. 505, §4, is amended to read:
Sec. 8. 23 MRSA §4209-A is enacted to read:
§ 4209-A. Public Transit Advisory Council
(1) One representative each from the federally designated planning organizations for the Bangor, Kittery, Lewiston and Auburn and Portland regions;
(2) One representative of private bus operators;
(3) One representative of a statewide nonprofit organization advocating on behalf of the elderly;
(4) One representative of a medical provider;
(5) One representative of a business that relies on public transportation;
(6) One representative of a statewide association of planning and development agencies;
(7) One representative of an organization representing persons with disabilities;
(8) One representative of a nonprofit transit provider;
(9) One representative of an economic development organization; and
(10) One representative of an organization representing low-income persons.
In making appointments, the commissioner shall ensure that rural and urban areas are represented.
Sec. 9. 30-A MRSA §3515, sub-§1, ¶A, as enacted by PL 1987, c. 737, Pt. A, §2 and Pt. C, §106 and amended by PL 1989, c. 6; c. 9, §2; and c. 104, Pt. C, §§8 and 10, is further amended to read:
Sec. 10. Staggered terms. Notwithstanding the Maine Revised Statutes, Title 23, section 4209-A, subsection 4, the Commissioner of Transportation shall designate the initial appointments of public members of the Public Transit Advisory Council under Title 23, section 4209-A, subsection 2, paragraph E, subparagraphs (1) to (3) for a one-year term, the appointments under Title 23, section 4209-A, subsection 2, paragraph E, subparagraphs (4) to (6) for a 2-year term and any other appointments for a 3-year term.
This bill replaces the requirement in current law for biennial plans for regional transit with a requirement for quinquennial plans, which is consistent with federal requirements. The bill eliminates the Interagency Transportation Coordinating Committee and replaces it with a new Public Transit Advisory Council. The council is required to assist state agencies and the Legislature on issues related to public transit services.
The bill provides that the council must include, at a minimum, the Commissioner of Transportation, the Commissioner of Health and Human Services, the Commissioner of Labor and the Commissioner of Economic and Community Development or their designees. The other members are appointed by the Commissioner of Transportation. The commissioner is required to invite members from the joint standing committee of the Legislature having jurisdiction over transportation matters representing different political parties and at least one representative of the Northern New England Passenger Rail Authority to participate in council meetings.
The council is required to report to the Governor and the joint standing committees of the Legislature having jurisdiction over transportation matters and health and human services matters by March 1st of each odd-numbered year.