SEVERAL BILLS HAVE BEEN INTRODUCED IN THE MISSOURI GENERAL ASSEMBLY THAT COULD POTENTIALLY IMPACT YOUR TRANSPORTATION DEPARTMENT. HERE IS A SUMMARY OF PENDING LEGISLATION.
SB 535 - Currently, the school board of an unaccredited district must designate accredited districts to which it will provide transportation for transfer students. This act instead requires the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to identify at least one accredited district to which an unaccredited district must provide transportation. If the designated district reaches full capacity, the Department must designate at least one additional district.
12/01/13 Bill pre-filed
01/08/14 First reading
01/15/14 Second reading and referred to Senate Education Committee
SB 587 - This act requires that fines imposed for violations detected through the use of automatic traffic enforcement systems shall go to the local school districts where the violation occurred to be used for transportation purposes. The fines distributed to a school district shall not be included in the school district's local effort figure under the foundation formula. Under the act, automated traffic enforcement systems also include automated speed enforcement systems.
12/03/13 Bill pre-filed
01/08/14 First reading
01/16/14 Second reading and referred to Senate Transportation and
HB 1626 - Specifies that the identity of a driver committing a traffic violation involving a school bus may be determined by a peace officer through the use of recorded images or video from a device mounted on the bus.
01/28/14 Bill introduced and first reading
01/29/14 Second reading
02/05/14 Referred to House Crime Prevention and Public Safety Committee
02/10/14 Public hearing on this bill conducted
HB 1819 - Before being used to transport school children, a privately owned bus company that contracts with a Missouri school district must notify the district if they own a school bus licensed in another state and all of the buses must have functioning two-way voice communication services. A privately owned school bus company is not allowed to inspect its own buses and must keep maintenance and inspection records that include requests for repair and produce them when requested. The school district must maintain the records and make them available under the Sunshine Law.
02/11/14 Bill introduced and first reading
02/12/14 Second reading
02/18/14 Referred to House Committee on Elementary and Secondary Education
To track these or any other bills introduced in the General Assembly, click here
CHANGE IN STATE LAW AND FEDERAL REGULATIONS REQUIRES TWO
WEEK DELAY BETWEEN CDL WRITTEN TEST AND SKILLS TESTING
Drivers applying for a commercial drivers license (CDL) must complete a written test to obtain a learners' permit, and a skills test, including a pre-trip inspection and road test. Currently, the skills test can be taken on the same day that the permit is received. On August 28, 2013 changes in Missouri state law and federal motor carrier safety regulations go into effect that require the applicant to hold the permit for fourteen (14) calendar days before he or she is allowed to take the skills test.
For additional information, click here
On January 18, 2011, a 6-year-old Callaway County, Missouri boy was run over and killed by his own school bus after getting off the bus at his home. A Missouri State Highway Patrol report on the accident concluded that the bus driver did not wait long enough after the student got off to clear the area around the bus before he set the bus in motion again.
One year to the day after the accident, the 78-year-old bus driver, who had pled guilty two months earlier to second degree involuntary manslaughter, was sentenced to four years in prison. However, the judge suspended the sentence, and placed the driver on five years' probation. He cannot drive any vehicle, let alone a school bus, and must perform 100 hours of community service, speaking to area bus drivers about school bus safety. The victim's grief-stricken parents did not want to see the driver spend time behind bars. Instead, they wanted to use the tragedy to educate bus drivers and riders on the potential hazzards so that no other family would have to suffer the loss of a child. Members of the victim's family said the case was not about revenge, but about preventing something like this from happening again.
The Missouri Association for Pupil Transportation (M.A.P.T.) in cooperation with the Missouri School Boards Association (MSBA) has produced a video about the North Calloway accident, entitled "DRIVING DISTRACTED...and then it happened."
M.A.P.T. wishes to thank the MSBA for allowing us to post a link to the video, as a means of educating school bus professionals and the general public of the possible tragic consequences of distraced driving.
To view the video, click here