It's a growing service industry.  As the "Baby Boom" generation advances into the stage of life where assistance is needed, the need for medically-related transportation has increased.

The drivers who provide that kind of service (i.e. rides to the clinic, doctor, appointments, etc) are termed Special Transportation Services (STS) providers.  And, due to the nature of their job, they're subject to a lot of regulation.

According to the Minnesota Department of Transportation, Special Transportation Services providers "provide transportation services primarily for the elderly or people with disabilities, as well as nonemergency medical transportation services paid for with public funding".

MNDOT has shared that they are proposing some changes to the rules that govern Special Transportation Services providers.  Following protocol, they are looking for public comment in advance of those changes. The changes could have significant impacts as the "rule amendments that are implemented will affect....providers, drivers and attendants of Special Transportation Services vehicles instructors, and organizations that provide training related to special transportation service, clients of special transportation services, and insurance companies who provide coverage for STS providers".

The proposed rule changes are detailed on the Minnesota Office of Administrative Hearings Discussion webpage.  There are a bunch of different discussion links, so look for '38819 Minnesota Department of Transportation Dual Notice of Intent to Adopt Rules'. In addition, MNDOT has more information about the proposed rule changes, the process, and more on their website; look for the Commercial Vehicle Operations page for more details.

February 21 is the expected target date for action.  If more than 25 people request a public hearing before that date, one will be arranged by MNDOT.

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