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Office of the Revisor of Statutes

Key: (1) language to be deleted (2) new language

CHAPTER 271--S.F.No. 2988

An act

relating to pupil transportation; establishing qualifications for type III school bus drivers; providing criminal penalties;

amending Minnesota Statutes 2006, sections 169A.03, subdivision 23; 171.02, by adding a subdivision; Minnesota Statutes 2007 Supplement, section 169.443, subdivision 9.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

Section 1.

Minnesota Statutes 2007 Supplement, section 169.443, subdivision 9, is amended to read:

Subd. 9.

Personal cellular phone call prohibition.

(a) As used in this subdivision, "school bus" has the meaning given in section 169.01, subdivision 6. In addition, the term includes type III school buses as described in section 169.01, subdivision 6, clause (5), when driven by employees or agents of school districts.

(b) A school bus driver may not operate a school bus while communicating over, or otherwise operating, a cellular phone for personal reasons, whether hand-held or hands free, when the vehicle is in motion.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective August 1, 2008, and applies to crimes committed on or after that date.

Sec. 2.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 169A.03, subdivision 23, is amended to read:

Subd. 23.

School bus.

"School bus" has the meaning given in section 169.01, subdivision 6. In addition, the term includes type III school buses as described in section 169.01, subdivision 6, clause (5), when driven by employees or agents of school districts.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective August 1, 2008, and applies to crimes committed on or after that date.

Sec. 3.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 171.02, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 2b.

Exception for type III school bus drivers.

(a) Notwithstanding subdivision 2, paragraph (c), the holder of a class D driver's license, without a school bus endorsement, may operate a type III school bus described in section 169.01, subdivision 6, clause (5), under the conditions in paragraphs (b) through (n).

(b) The operator is an employee of the entity that owns, leases, or contracts for the school bus.

(c) The operator's employer has adopted and implemented a policy that provides for annual training and certification of the operator in:

(1) safe operation of a type III school bus;

(2) understanding student behavior, including issues relating to students with disabilities;

(3) encouraging orderly conduct of students on the bus and handling incidents of misconduct appropriately;

(4) knowing and understanding relevant laws, rules of the road, and local school bus safety policies;

(5) handling emergency situations;

(6) proper use of seat belts and child safety restraints;

(7) performance of pretrip vehicle inspections; and

(8) safe loading and unloading of students, including, but not limited to:

(i) utilizing a safe location for loading and unloading students at the curb, on the nontraffic side of the roadway, or at off-street loading areas, driveways, yards, and other areas to enable the student to avoid hazardous conditions;

(ii) refraining from loading and unloading students in a vehicular traffic lane, on the shoulder, in a designated turn lane, or a lane adjacent to a designated turn lane;

(iii) avoiding a loading or unloading location that would require a pupil to cross a road, or ensuring that the driver or an aide personally escort the pupil across the road if it is not reasonably feasible to avoid such a location; and

(iv) placing the type III school bus in "park" during loading and unloading.

(d) A background check or background investigation of the operator has been conducted that meets the requirements under section 122A.18, subdivision 8, or 123B.03 for school district employees; section 144.057 or chapter 245C for day care employees; or section 171.321, subdivision 3, for all other persons operating a type A or type III school bus under this subdivision.

(e) Operators shall submit to a physical examination as required by section 171.321, subdivision 2.

(f) The operator's employer has adopted and implemented a policy that provides for mandatory drug and alcohol testing of applicants for operator positions and current operators, in accordance with section 181.951, subdivisions 2, 4, and 5.

(g) The operator's driver's license is verified annually by the entity that owns, leases, or contracts for the school bus.

(h) A person who sustains a conviction, as defined under section 609.02, of violating section 169A.25, 169A.26, 169A.27, or 169A.31, or whose driver's license is revoked under sections 169A.50 to 169A.53 of the implied consent law, or who is convicted of or has their driver's license revoked under a similar statute or ordinance of another state, is precluded from operating a type III school bus for five years from the date of conviction.

(i) A person who has ever been convicted of a disqualifying offense as defined in section 171.3215, subdivision 1, paragraph (c), may not operate a type III school bus under this subdivision.

(j) A person who sustains a conviction, as defined under section 609.02, of a moving offense in violation of chapter 169 within three years of the first of three other moving offenses is precluded from operating a type III school bus for one year from the date of the last conviction.

(k) An operator who sustains a conviction as described in paragraph (h), (i), or (j) while employed by the entity that owns, leases, or contracts for the school bus, shall report the conviction to the employer within ten days of the date of the conviction.

(l) Students riding the type III school bus must have training required under section 123B.90, subdivision 2.

(m) Documentation of meeting the requirements listed in this subdivision must be maintained under separate file at the business location for each type III school bus operator. The business manager, school board, governing body of a nonpublic school, or any other entity that owns, leases, or contracts for the type III school bus operating under this subdivision is responsible for maintaining these files for inspection.

(n) The type III school bus must bear a current certificate of inspection issued under section 169.451.

(o) An operator employed by a school or school district, whose normal duties do not include operating a type III school bus, who holds a class D driver's license without a school bus endorsement, may operate a type III school bus and is exempt from paragraphs (d), (e), (f), (g), and (k).

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective September 1, 2008.

Presented to the governor May 2, 2008

Signed by the governor May 4, 2008, 3:37 p.m.