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APPENDIX B Case Study Summaries A primary focus of this project was to better understand whether and how fixed route transit agencies commingle ADA paratransit and other paratransit riders. In addition to the survey of transit agencies, case studies were selected by the TCRP Project B-34 panel based on a list of rec- ommended case studies proposed by the research team. Full case studies were conducted at five sites (indicated with an asterisk "*") and 13 other transit agencies were interviewed by telephone or in-person for "mini" case studies. ACCESS Transportation Systems (ACCESS) in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Antelope Valley Transit Authority (AVTA) in Lancaster, California Chattanooga Area Regional Transportation Authority (CARTA) in Chattanooga, Tennessee* Delaware Transit Corporation (DTC) in Wilmington, Delaware* Intercity Transit in Olympia, Washington Jacksonville Transportation Authority (JTA) in Jacksonville, Florida* Kitsap Transit in Bremerton, Washington* Modoc Transportation Agency in Alturas, California Ottumwa Transit in Ottumwa, Iowa Pace Suburban Bus in Arlington Heights, Illinois Portage Area Regional Transportation Authority (PARTA) in Kent, Ohio Regional Transportation Program (RTP) in Portland, Maine* Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Space Coast Area Transit (SCAT) in Cocoa, Florida The Rapid in Grand Rapids, Michigan Transit Authority of River City (TARC) in Louisville, Kentucky Votran in South Daytona, Florida Waukesha Metro (Metro) in Waukesha, Wisconsin Case study results are highlighted below. The information gathered from the case studies was used throughout development of the Resource Guide. ACCESS Transportation Systems (ACCESS) Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Overview ACCESS Transportation Systems (ACCESS) is a coordinated paratransit system sponsored by the Port Authority of Allegheny County (Port Authority), the transit provider in the Pittsburgh metropolitan area. ACCESS is a decentralized brokerage, with one entity under contract to the Port Authority managing the service as the broker and subcontracting with various providers in the area to provide day-to-day service. ACCESS is responsible for managing the brokerage and 68

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Case Study Summaries 69 coordinating the services. Transportation is available to the general public, but the vast major- ity of the riders are seniors and persons with disabilities. ACCESS also provides ADA paratran- sit service on behalf of the Port Authority. Pittsburgh's history with coordinated service stretches back to the late 1970s, with ACCESS' start as a federal demonstration program testing the brokerage concept for specialized trans- portation in a large metropolitan region. After passage of the ADA, ACCESS also became the ADA paratransit provider for the Port Authority. ADA services were layered into the services ACCESS already provided, including service for the Allegheny County Area on Aging and Med- icaid Non-Emergency Medical Transportation (NEMT). Given the high level of coordination with a myriad of agencies now numbering more than 100, the ADA paratransit service comprises less than a third of the total ridership. Thus, ACCESS is not primarily an ADA paratransit service, nor do the requirements of the ADA drive ACCESS' services. Although the agency carefully adheres to the ADA requirements, and in fact has devel- oped model ADA eligibility certification procedures, it is not first and foremost an ADA para- transit program, but a coordinated paratransit program that also provides ADA paratransit ser- vice. However, the addition of ADA service into the coordinated mix has improved the general level of service for all riders, including non-ADA riders, and also provides an operating structure for the overall program. There are eight geographic parts of the ACCESS service area, with one provider designated as the primary provider in each area. ACCESS has developed detailed contracts for its service providers, structured to encourage effective and efficient service and competition among its ser- vice providers. The agency relies more on the "carrot" rather than the "stick" approach with its contractors, rewarding good performance, rather than penalizing poor performance. Each con- tract provider is responsible for trip reservations, scheduling, and dispatch for trips originating in its area. Riders call different providers to arrange their trips depending on where they live; there is no single number to call for trip scheduling. Service and operating policies and parameters vary somewhat for ADA and non-ADA riders, ensuring that ADA mandates are met. For example, during peak periods, it sometimes happens that a small number of non-ADA trips are denied. Fares and service area also vary for the differ- ent rider types. Eligibility for ACCESS is determined by the sponsoring program. ACCESS has developed a nationally recognized ADA eligibility determination process. Notably, ACCESS, through an arrangement with the Allegheny County Department of Human Services that provides funds for NEMT transportation, requires certain Medicaid eligible clients to go through the ADA eligibil- ity certification process. This arrangement was implemented in 2004. Prior to that, Medicaid eli- gible riders needing transportation were given a choice as to type of transportation, including a subsidized gas card, a pass for riding fixed route transit, or ACCESS door-to-door service. Many choose the convenience of door-to-door service. Under the current agreement with the Depart- ment of Human Services, Medicaid eligible individuals who request door-to-door service go through ACCESS' ADA certification process to determine if they are able to ride fixed route. This approach transitioned almost 21,000 trips to fixed route service in fiscal year 2006, representing an actual saving of close to $500,000 for that year. The largest component of ACCESS' operating budget come from Pennsylvania's lottery funds, which subsidize transportation for all adults 65 years of age and older, constituting 38% of FY 2006 operating funds. The second largest component comes through the Port Authority for the ADA services--37% of total funds. Remaining funds come from the human service agencies that sponsor trips, at 17% of the total, and 8% comes from passenger fare revenues.

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70 Resource Guide for Commingling ADA and Non-ADA Paratransit Riders With the size of the service and high degree of coordination that ACCESS achieves, there have been situations where the mixing of different rider types on the same vehicle has caused prob- lems, for example, when there are serious behavior issues of certain riders. In such cases, ACCESS takes steps to mitigate problems by separating riders onto different vehicles, if necessary. ACCESS has the resources and flexibility to take such action when this is necessary and appro- priate and sees this as a common sense approach to coordination. Importantly, ACCESS edu- cates its riders as to the benefits of ride-sharing, particularly those benefits that result in a higher level of service and lower fares. Lessons Learned Mixing different rider types on the same service and on the same vehicles is a practice with a long history in Pittsburgh that underlies Pittsburgh's highly regarded coordinated paratransit service, which is well-accepted by the community. The approach to coordination and rider com- mingling was already developed and refined for many years before the passage of the ADA. When the ADA was implemented, it was not a major undertaking to roll ADA service into the ACCESS mix, although certain policies and procedures were modified to ensure ADA regulations were met, for example, the requirement for booking next-day service. The addition of ADA paratransit into the ACCESS coordination mix has generally increased the overall level of service, improving paratransit service for all riders, including non-ADA rid- ers. That the other agencies involved with ACCESS have continued to participate and to fund trips that are now somewhat more expensive, given the higher level of service caused by ADA's requirements, is testament to ACCESS's success, as well as the availability of funding. It is important to recognize the large role that the Pennsylvania lottery funds play. This par- ticular funding source subsidizes all trips for adults 65 years of age and older on ACCESS, con- tributing more than $12 million in fiscal year 2006. Antelope Valley Transit Authority (AVTA) Lancaster, California Overview The Antelope Valley Transit Authority (AVTA) is a Joint Powers Authority (JPA) created in 1992 by the cities of Lancaster and Palmdale and the County of Los Angeles to provide public transportation in the Antelope Valley, a large region in northern Los Angeles County. AVTA pro- vides local fixed route and demand response service for adults over 65 and persons with disabil- ities, as well as commuter service to downtown Los Angeles, more than 60 miles distant. All transit services are operated by a private contractor. Access Services, Inc., (ASI) is a private, non-profit entity that provides ADA paratransit service in Los Angeles County on behalf of the numerous fixed route operators in Los Angeles County and is the broker providing AVTA's ADA complementary paratransit services. In 1996, AVTA began providing ADA paratransit service in the Antelope Valley on a con- tract basis for ASI. This arrangement, worked out cooperatively between AVTA and ASI, built on the demand response service already being provided by AVTA in its region. This seemed a cost-effective approach, with AVTA adding ADA paratransit service onto its already established demand response service, gaining service efficiencies in its relatively self-contained part of the county, and allowing ASI to concentrate on providing ADA paratransit service in the remain- ing portions of vast Los Angeles County. ADA paratransit ridership demand grew at a fast pace. By 2000, ADA ridership constituted 17.7% of AVTA's total demand response ridership. By 2003, ADA ridership was 33% of total

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Case Study Summaries 71 demand response ridership, and by fiscal year 2005, the last full year of the arrangement, ADA ridership had grown to almost half (47.1%) of AVTA's demand response ridership. To meet ADA prohibitions of capacity constraints, it became increasingly necessary for AVTA to re- schedule or turn down trips already scheduled for non-ADA riders, leading to complaints by the non-ADA riders. These complaints and the fact that the AVTA Board did not want to expand transit service resulted in the decision to terminate the relationship with ASI. AVTA had kept ASI apprised of the situation, including the growing problems with demand, so ASI was not sur- prised by AVTA's decision. In October 2005, ASI took back responsibility for ADA service pro- vision, contracting with a different provider for ADA service in the Antelope Valley. Lessons Learned Commingling the Los Angeles County ADA service with AVTA's local demand response ser- vice appeared to be a good idea at the outset; one that had the potential to lead to cost efficiencies. But in practice, given the growing demand for ADA service, the requirement that such demand had to be met, the constrained capacity of AVTA's demand response service, and the fact that ADA service was the ultimate responsibility of another county entity with its own funding base, the decision was made to return service responsibility to ASI. While AVTA service operates more smoothly without the commingled ADA component, AVTA noted that the existence of two dif- ferent demand response services in its area probably introduces some complications for riders who are eligible for both types of service. Chattanooga Area Regional Transportation Authority (CARTA) Chattanooga, Tennessee Overview Chattanooga has a long history of providing public transportation, dating back to 1875 when horse-drawn trolley cars first appeared on Market Street. By 1889, electric streetcars replaced the horse-drawn trolleys. The streetcars as well as motor buses were operated until Southern Coach Lines assumed control and discontinued the streetcar line at the end of World War II. In 1973, the City of Chattanooga purchased Southern Coach Lines and created the Chattanooga Area Regional Transportation Authority (CARTA). CARTA now operates fixed route bus service, the Lookout Mountain Incline Railway, the Downtown Electric Shuttle, and Care-A-Van, which is the ADA paratransit service for people with disabilities. In addition to its diversified array of ser- vices, CARTA is known for its use of transit intelligent transportation systems (ITS) technologies. From 1979 to 1993, CARTA purchased demand response services from Easter Seals Transporta- tion Service, which provided a variety of demand response trips for different funding sources. In 1993, the demand response operation was brought in house and CARTA assumed responsi- bility for operating the service, with a focus on providing ADA paratransit service. Although it primarily provides ADA paratransit service, just prior to the site visit in 2007, CARTA began pro- viding selected Medicaid Non-Emergency Medical Transportation (NEMT) through a contract with Blue Cross. Eligible riders would be assigned to CARTA by TennCare, the state agency that is responsible for managing the Medicaid program in Tennessee. These customers were also eli- gible for ADA service, making it possible to charge Medicaid for transportation services that might otherwise have been billed as ADA. At the time of the interview, CARTA was considering adding other similar contracts to provide subsidized rides. Lessons Learned Although CARTA was just embarking on this new commingled service with TennCare, there were several lessons learned suggested by staff. First, make standard operating procedures

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72 Resource Guide for Commingling ADA and Non-ADA Paratransit Riders consistent for all contract types. This effort will make it easier to provide consistent service to a variety of rider types and makes internal management easier. The manager also mentioned the importance of being sure that recordkeeping and billing information can be formatted to inter- face with other contract requirements, particularly Medicaid and other programs that may require specific information by rider that is beyond what is typically collected by a transit agency. Delaware Transit Corporation (DTC), D/B/A DART First State Wilmington, Delaware Overview The Delaware Transit Corporation (DTC) is a division of the Delaware Department of Trans- portation (DelDOT), serving the entire state of Delaware with fixed route and paratransit ser- vice, as well as commuter rail service in the northern part of the state. DTC was created in 1995 to manage and operate the various transit programs in the state, merging fixed route service in the northern Delaware/Wilmington area; paratransit service in the southern part of the state, originally called DAST (Delaware Administration for Specialized Transport); resort transit service operating summer months in the beach communities; rail ser- vice in the northern part of the state; and commuter bus service in the urban areas. This merger also included a name change to DART First State. This merger brought the different paratransit operations together into one service: from the north, DTC gained the ADA complementary paratransit requirement for the Wilmington area fixed route service; and from the south, DTC took over DAST, a long-established paratransit program serving elderly and disabled riders in the southern, more rural part of the state. With the merger, the State determined that it would continue to serve seniors as well as riders with disabilities. The evolution of paratransit rider commingling continued. In 1997, dialysis trips were brought into the paratransit mix when the state legislature determined that any resident under- going dialysis treatment would be eligible for ADA paratransit, regardless of whether they met the ADA criteria. In about 2003, Medicaid trips were also added when DTC began providing some Medicaid trips on behalf of the statewide broker on a contract basis. Paratransit ridership grew over the years, and it became increasingly difficult to meet demand from seniors, particularly in the northern part of the state. DTC developed several strategies to meeting this challenge. First, it ensured that all senior centers and other agencies serving seniors in the state had access to a vehicle through the Sec. 5310 funds. Second, DTC became very pro- active in ensuring its fixed route service was accessible to seniors, with a strong focus on travel training. Third, DTC introduced services that improved the productivity of paratransit, focus- ing particularly in the more rural parts of the state. Funding has been a challenge; DTC uses federal and state funds for paratransit. The original decision to add dialysis transportation to the paratransit mix was accompanied by a modest amount of state funds; however, this funding did not continue in subsequent years, while needs for the service continued to grow. Lessons Learned Given its experience, DTC staff recommends that any organization interested in commingling paratransit riders sponsored by different programs clearly differentiate among the programs, so

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Case Study Summaries 73 that riders are clear as to which program is theirs and exactly what their eligibility provides. Iden- tifying and "branding" the different services and then ensuring that riders know which service they are entitled to, once eligible, will help the riders understand the transportation services that they can use. Unless this is made clear at the outset and reinforced over time, riders may, under- standably perhaps, assume that they are entitled to all the services that are operated by the com- mingling transit agency. DTC's experience also shows the importance of developing relationships with the various other agencies that serve paratransit riders. While establishing such relationships with, for example, the state agency responsible for Medicaid, is likely easier when the transit system is also a state agency (as is DTC), it is nonetheless important to develop relationships with those other agencies whose missions intersect with that of the paratransit system. Intercity Transit Olympia, Washington Overview The Thurston County Public Transportation Benefit Area (Intercity Transit) was formed as a Public Benefit Authority in 1981 to serve the cities of Lacy, Olympia, and Tumwater in Wash- ington State. Services currently provided include 22 fixed routes, Dial-a-Lift service for cus- tomers unable to use fixed route service (ADA complementary paratransit service), the Village Van service for welfare-to-work recipients, and a Car Pool program. When Intercity Transit started operating paratransit for people with disabilities, Dial-a-Lift was operated in house and no other demand response services were offered. With passage of the ADA in 1990, the Dial-a-Lift operation took on its present form and in 1993 a new program called "Custom Bus" was started. This program was a general public dial-a-ride service and was also operated in house. The Custom Bus service ran later into the evening and may have been operated on separate vehicles. Dispatching trips for Custom Bus was handled by the Dial-A-Lift office. Riders were commingled with ADA passengers, and the manager maintained a separate count of passengers to report to the FTA. In addition to providing service for Custom Bus rid- ers, Dial-A-Lift vans met fixed route buses at the transit centers, and picked up Custom Bus rid- ers needing rides from the transit center to their final destination. Because of cuts in state tran- sit funding, the Custom Bus service ended in 2000. From 2000 to 2002, only ADA complementary paratransit services were provided by Intercity. In 2002, using Job and Access/Reverse Commute (JARC) funds, the Village Van program was created, housed within the Development Department. Service is provided on separate vehicles, using drivers who are participants in the JARC program. Service policies for each program are different and each program has its own marketing and public information materials, although each program is managed using the same paratransit scheduling and dispatching software. However, since the databases for each program are sepa- rate, there are no concerns over privacy regarding client information. Lessons Learned Intercity Transit reported that it found commingling passengers to be difficult because of the differences in the program requirements for the Dial-a-Lift (ADA complementary paratransit service) and the Village Van (JARC) service. They indicated that the decision not to commingle ADA and JARC riders was not influenced by previous experience with the Custom Bus program.

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74 Resource Guide for Commingling ADA and Non-ADA Paratransit Riders Jacksonville Transportation Authority (JTA) Jacksonville, Florida Overview The Jacksonville Transit Authority (JTA) serves the City of Jacksonville and all of Duval County. The city and county governments were consolidated in 1968, making Jacksonville the largest city in the country in terms of land mass, at 840 square miles. Formed in 1971, JTA is a multimodal transportation authority that provides public transportation services and is also responsible for developing and improving the local, state-, and city-owned roadways and bridges. In Florida, transportation services for seniors, people with disabilities, low-income individu- als, and others identified as "transportation disadvantaged" (TD) are coordinated through the state's Commission for the Transportation Disadvantaged (TD) program. The TD program requires that each county identify a Community Transportation Coordinator (CTC) to be responsible for coordinating all publicly funded transportation for those who are transportation disadvantaged. Partial funding is provided by the state TD Trust Fund. In 2001, the TD Commission designated JTA as the CTC for Jacksonville/Duval County. Prior to 2001, a private entity under contract to the city/county functioned as the CTC for Duval County. This entity was responsible for coordinating ADA paratransit service as well as Medic- aid Non-Emergency Medical Transportation (NEMT), and other specialized transportation services including the TD program. As a result, service was already commingled when JTA took over in 2001. While JTA's paratransit program continues to mix its ADA riders with non-ADA riders, there has been a significant "un-mingling" of one of the transportation services at JTA. Starting in August 2006, JTA determined that it would no longer provide NEMT service because of inade- quate funding for the service. NEMT is now provided by a private company serving as the Med- icaid transportation broker. Funding for JTA comes from several sources. The ADA service is funded through JTA's oper- ating budget, which includes an annual appropriation from the city/county. The TD service is funded through the state's TD Trust Fund, which until recently was sufficient to reimburse JTA for all its TD ridership. Finally, a small portion of the service is funded by several participating agencies whose clients are transported by JTA. These human service agencies have entered into Memoranda of Understanding (MOUs) with JTA, agreeing to reimburse JTA for the cost of their sponsored trips. Cost savings have been realized as a result of commingling on JTA vehicles. If an applicant is determined to be ADA eligible but lives outside the 3/4 mile ADA service area or needs to travel beyond the ADA service area, JTA staff can determine if the rider is also eligible for the TD pro- gram. If so, that person can use the paratransit service to travel throughout Duval County. Such trips are then billed to the TD program. If an individual is ADA eligible but does not meet the requirements for TD, that rider can travel only within the defined ADA service area. This same approach was also used when JTA provided Medicaid transportation; that is, if a rider was eligi- ble for both ADA and Medicaid, when that rider took a Medicaid eligible trip, the trip was billed to the Medicaid program at the established rates; otherwise it was considered an ADA trip. JTA has a sophisticated computer assisted scheduling/dispatch (CASD) system, and mobile data terminals (MDTs) and automatic vehicle location (AVL) devices were installed in 2006. The CASD system has facilitated the use of a fare structure that varies by distance, as the sys- tem computes the appropriate fare depending on the type of rider, trip distance, and JTA's trip billing process.

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Case Study Summaries 75 Lessons Learned JTA's experience shows that commingled paratransit service can work well, as long as fund- ing is available to support the various programs beyond ADA. JTA's experience with the Medic- aid NEMT program reflects the difficulty in sustaining transportation services for a program that has withdrawn significant funds for its provision. JTA provided Medicaid transportation as part of its commingled mix from the time it became the CTC in 2001 until August 2006. The Medic- aid program was billed for all Medicaid trips provided by JTA through the agency's grid-based method. However, when the funding for Medicaid transportation was significantly reduced, the transportation agency decided to end its formal relationship. Experience has further shown, however, that some Medicaid eligible riders continue to use the JTA paratransit program for Medicaid eligible trips. The difference, however, is that JTA can no longer bill Medicaid for those trips, but absorbs the costs for those trips from its operating budget. Kitsap Transit Bremerton, Washington Overview Kitsap Transit was created in the early 1980s as a Public Transportation Benefit Area. It sub- sequently purchased the assets of a private provider, Kitsap Community Resources, which was providing fixed route service in Bremerton, and expanded the service to other small cities in Kitsap County. Kitsap is a multimodal service provider with fixed route, ADA paratransit, pub- lic Dial-a-Ride, ferry service, as well as Vanpool, VanLink, and worker/driver programs. All ser- vices are provided directly by Kitsap Transit and are not outsourced. Supplemental taxi service is used as needed, but it is a small part of total service. Initially, Kitsap contracted with Paratransit Inc., an existing non-profit provider, to provide all ADA service. At that time, Paratransit Inc. was also providing up to 80% of Medicaid NEMT trips in the county. Later, Kitsap made the decision to bring ADA paratransit in house, includ- ing call-taking, scheduling, dispatching, and operation. It called the program ACCESS. Around the same time that paratransit service was brought in house, general public Dial-a- Ride services began, largely as a result of residents inquiring as to how they could ride the ACCESS vehicles. In response, Kitsap Transit set up public Dial-a-Ride service in areas where fixed route was not feasible, given lower levels of trip demand, population density, and size of the particular service area. The general public program was operated as part of ACCESS Services. The service policies vary slightly between the ACCESS program and Dial-a-Ride program, including differences in service area and hours of service. Also, no application is required to use the Dial-a-Ride program, while use of ACCESS requires ADA certification. The fares for both programs and the VanLink program (described below) are the same, so there is no incentive or disincentive for riding with one program or another. In 2000, Kitsap Transit developed VanLink as part of ACCESS Services. VanLink vans are pro- vided to social service agencies to provide service to ACCESS eligible passengers. When needed, ACCESS has requested that the agency running a VanLink vehicle add an ACCESS rider to its run if the trip could be accommodated by that vehicle. In this way, service can be provided to an ADA eligible passenger without allocating existing ACCESS vehicles to provide the trip. Kitsap Transit also operates a Vanpool program as part of "routed" or fixed route services. As with VanLink, Kitsap Transit may ask the Vanpool to pick up an ACCESS client if that is an acceptable alternative. Again, this allows the provision of an ADA eligible trip without the need to use ACCESS service resources.

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76 Resource Guide for Commingling ADA and Non-ADA Paratransit Riders Lessons Learned According to Kitsap staff, the major lesson learned was that open and ongoing communication with agencies and employers about the need to coordinate transportation with work schedules is essential. Kitsap also indicated that it tries to take a practical approach to meeting the transporta- tion needs of their customers. It was mentioned several times during the visit that Kitsap Transit tries to find a solution that makes the most sense to provide the needed transportation to the customer. Modoc Transportation Agency Alturas, California Overview The Modoc Transportation Agency, known as the "Sage Stage," is the public transportation provider in Modoc County, California. The agency, a Joint Power Authority between the County of Modoc and City of Alturas, began providing transportation service in 1999. Day-to-day service is operated on a contract basis by a private transportation company. Modoc County is a rural county, located in the far northeastern corner of the state of Califor- nia. The county, situated on a high desert plateau, has small, dispersed communities, the largest of which is Alturas, with a population of 2,800. Modoc County began its public transportation program in January 1999, providing intercity and demand response transportation services. Known as Dial-A-Ride, the demand response service is open to all riders, including riders with disabilities who are considered ADA riders and provides a higher level of service and discounted fares. When Modoc County's primary local transit funding, which comes from the state's Trans- portation Development Act (TDA) program, was reduced substantially, the Executive Director approached the county's key human service agencies, whose clients relied on the transportation service, and suggested that they could help maintain transit service with financial contributions. Most of the half dozen agencies that were approached provided a lump sum payment, ranging from $5,000 to $65,000. In addition, these agencies subsidize transit service for their clients, pro- viding vouchers for them to ride transit, for which they later reimburse the transportation agency at rates established by the fare structure. Under these arrangements with the local human service agencies, Modoc County's transportation agency is committed to commingling all types of riders on its demand response service. Although the annual subsidy amounts paid by the contributing human service agencies are not guaranteed, and not all agencies provide a subsidy each year, these local contributions are a sig- nificant source of the agency's operating budget. In a year with generous contributions, the annual subsidy funds from the human service agencies constitute as much as one-third of the agency's operating funds. Lessons Learned The successful commingling of the various rider types on the Modoc County Transportation Agency's demand response service results in large part from the entrepreneurial ability of the agency to ensure funding from the key local human service agencies in the county whose clients ride the service. The rural nature of Modoc County also contributes to successful commingling. In the large and very rural area, the transportation agency is the only transportation option avail- able and it "does what it takes" to provide the needed transportation and to get the different rid- ers to their various destinations. On occasion, this may mean that the driver has to revise his

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Case Study Summaries 77 prescheduled manifest on the fly when there are riders on the vehicle who should not be riding together at the same time. Ottumwa Transit Authority (OTA) Ottumwa, Iowa Overview Ottumwa Transit Authority (OTA) was created by voter referendum in 1972 as a unit of municipal government and is considered an enterprise fund. Currently, Ottumwa Transit pro- vides general public fixed route service, general public dial-a-ride (Ten-Fifteen), ADA service (OTA Lift), and JARC transportation. Collectively Ottumwa Transit, OTA Lift, and Ten-Fifteen Transportation serve 11 different school districts, Head Start, and Sheltered Workshops in 9 out of the 11 counties in the service area. OTA started serving people with disabilities in 1982, under Section 504 regulations. At the time that OTA was created, lift-equipped vehicles were purchased for use on all fixed routes. No paratransit service was provided until the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act. The OTA Lift program was created in 1992. At about the same time, Ten-Fifteen Transit was also created to serve the transportation needs of residents of the outlying counties who were not eligible for service under the ADA requirements. Passengers of both programs were commingled on paratransit vehicles to maximize vehicle utilization. Other factors that influenced the decision to commingle were the large size, rural nature, and low population density of the service area. Except for hours of service and reservation hours, service polices for all programs are the same, although general public riders do not need to fill out an application for service. Paratransit sched- uling and dispatching software is used to operate all service. Given the long trip distances and the rural nature of the service area, staff tries to coordinate as many rides as possible on each vehicle. Lessons Learned OTA indicated that commingling trips taught them two things. First, it is important to make sure that all partners understand that coordination is the key to the effective provision of ser- vice. Second, all partners must understand that when solving a transportation problem, it is important to look to solutions that make sense. For example, all OTA services are commingled in order to maximize vehicle usage. Pace Suburban Bus Arlington Heights, Illinois Overview The Regional Transportation Authority (RTA) was created in 1974 by state legislation and is responsible for financial oversight and regional planning for a six-county area in Northeastern Illinois, which includes Cook County and the City of Chicago. RTA is also responsible for admin- istering the ADA paratransit eligibility determination process and providing travel training. Three service boards operate transit service in the region: Pace, Chicago Transit Authority (CTA), and Metra. Pace is responsible for providing suburban bus service throughout parts of Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry, and Will counties, as well as into Indiana; CTA operates bus, subway, and elevated services in Chicago and some nearby suburbs; and Metra operates commuter rail service throughout the region.

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78 Resource Guide for Commingling ADA and Non-ADA Paratransit Riders In addition to providing ADA paratransit service in its own service area, as of July 2006, Pace became responsible for providing all ADA paratransit and overseeing the Taxi Access Program service for the CTA service area. Within the city of Chicago, Pace oversees ADA paratransit ser- vice operated by three private contractors. In Chicago, the service is ADA-only and riders are not commingled with other non-ADA riders. However, outside the Chicago ADA paratransit ser- vice area, demand response service is provided through some 70 paratransit/dial-a-ride (DAR) programs under a variety of contract arrangements including contracts with private operators, brokering service to contract operators, and directly operated services. Some DAR services com- mingle ADA and non-ADA riders; others are open to the general public, while other DARs focus on serving seniors and/or people with disabilities. ADA service is provided within the 3/4-mile service area on either side of fixed route service; however, dial-a-ride service areas vary depend- ing on the funding source. Most reservations are made one day in advance, although some dial- a-ride programs allow reservations to be made up to a week in advance. Fares vary among the programs, as do service hours and days. Lessons Learned There are many coordination lessons to be learned from this complicated region. Pace views itself as a service operator more than a policy-making entity. When opportunities arise to com- mingle customers and avoid duplication of service, they will work with local entities to opera- tionalize those decisions. In particular, Pace staff said that developing standard operating poli- cies and procedures for hours/days of service, fares, reservations, and so on would make it easier for riders to use commingled services and make it easier for operators to provide service. Stan- dardizing service would also help to simplify invoicing. For example, currently some projects are billed based on the number of trips provided, while others are calculated based on revenue hours or miles of service. Further, because different performance measures are used to monitor ser- vice, it makes it difficult to mesh program requirements. Developing passenger information and the ability to provide it in a centralized manner is important. Staff noted that while all of the paratransit/DAR services Pace providers are listed on its website, there is a need for more centralization of information, at least at the county level. Finally, Pace advises transit agencies to be cautious about demonstration projects with lim- ited funding and uncertain sustainability. With multiple players, it is important that service sus- tainability factor into all decisions to start new and commingled service; taking away a program can be difficult both for riders and operators. Portage Area Regional Transit Authority (PARTA) Kent, Ohio Overview In the mid-1970s, Kent State University started a campus bus service, primarily providing service to the Kent State campus and students, with some fixed route service in the surrounding community. In 1992, in order to access federal funding for the purchase of vehicles, the univer- sity created the Portage Area Regional Transit Authority (PARTA), a regional transit authority with 501(c)(3) non-profit status. PARTA started out by providing the human service transporta- tion in the community to agencies such as the Office on Aging and the Office of Mental Retar- dation and Developmental Disabilities. Initially, neither Kent State nor PARTA provided ADA complimentary paratransit service. In the late 1990s, Kent State decided that, given federal requirements, it would cease operat- ing fixed route service outside of the campus. Fixed route service and the requirement for ADA

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Case Study Summaries 79 complementary paratransit service was turned over to PARTA, along with three buses that had been purchased with federal funds. ADA service was added to the existing non-ADA transportation program with little notice- able impact. For the most part, service policies are the same for all services, although there are some differences with regard to eligibility, days and hours when reservations can be made, and days and hours of service. PARTA provides all services using its own vehicles and employees, and paratransit trips are provided using the same vehicles for all programs. A paratransit scheduling and dispatching software program is used to manage service and data are kept in one database. According to PARTA staff, most applicants prefer to register and ride under the non-ADA pro- grams when possible, due to the fact that the ADA service area (strictly defined as the 3/4-mile corridor around fixed route service) limits the destinations that a passenger may travel to, since the non-ADA service encompasses the entire county. Lessons Learned Funding for non-ADA trips was a particular issue for PARTA. At the time of the interview, PARTA had a dedicated funding source--a 0.25% sales tax levy. However, funding from its non- ADA funding partners (including the Office on Aging and Office of Mental Health/Developmen- tal Disabilities) had either remained the same or had been reduced for the upcoming fiscal year, although the expectation of providing the needed trips remained. As a result, PARTA noted that this has placed a heavier burden on the dedicated funding available since there is no requirement for the agencies sponsoring trips to pay for their portion of trips. Regional Transportation Program (RTP) Portland, Maine Overview The Regional Transportation Program (RTP) is a private, non-profit agency that was created in 1976. It is located in Portland, Maine, and provides service to all of Cumberland County. The RTP was originally formed by combining the transportation services provided by three different organizations: the Portland Chapter of the American Red Cross, York Cumberland Senior Ser- vices, and Social Services of the Greater Portland Transit District. The history of coordinated services in the Cumberland County-City of Portland area began in the 1970s when a state law mandating coordination was passed. Prior to the passage of this legislation, three agencies, the Red Cross, Cumberland Senior Services, and Social Services of the Greater Portland Transit District provided paratransit services. The Maine Department of Trans- portation (Maine DOT) designated RTP to coordinate paratransit service for eligible participants of various health and human services agencies and the Maine Department of Human Services required its agencies to work with RTP in the provision of paratransit service. Service was pro- vided "in house" by RTP, including a volunteer driver component. With the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), RTP also became the ADA com- plementary paratransit provider, under a contract with the cities of Portland, South Portland, and Westbrook. The ADA riders were added to existing service with little apparent effect on operations. Service was provided using existing resources, vehicles, and volunteer drivers, although policies were put into place to ensure that ADA service met the regulatory requirements (e.g., providing previous day reservations for ADA service, versus two-day advance reservations for all other services). Currently, the ADA service component makes up only a small part of the total services pro- vided by RTP. MaineCare, Maine's Medical Assistance Transportation Program, is the largest source of funding and passengers.

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80 Resource Guide for Commingling ADA and Non-ADA Paratransit Riders Customers from all programs are commingled on paratransit vehicles and service policies are generally the same for all programs operated by RTP. They describe the eligibility process as "lay- ered" due to the number of different programs served. The one basic requirement for eligibility is that the rider must be a Cumberland County resident. Lessons Learned RTP indicated that commingling riders presented both lessons and challenges. An important lesson RTP learned was that transporting non-ADA riders helped to stimulate other funding partners (although this lesson may be more applicable to non-profit providers than transit agen- cies). Additionally, commingling riders lends itself to increasing productivity by adding multi- ple riders to existing runs. The primary challenge in commingling is in dealing with the bureaucracy and lack of coordi- nation among agencies at the state level. As an example, at the time of the site visit, RTP had four mileage reimbursement rates, depending on the particular funding program. Another ongoing challenge is looking for other modes of transportation to add to the mix of transportation modes currently offered. RTP indicated that the use of paratransit scheduling and dispatching software has been ben- eficial in categorizing trips by funding source or program and, therefore, has been helpful in the billing process. However, RTP noted that the use of technology has not helped with the sched- uling of rides as much as was anticipated. Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Overview The Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA), based in Philadelphia, is the fifth largest public transit operation in the country, providing transportation in a five- county region including Philadelphia, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, and Montgomery counties. SEPTA operates fixed route bus, trolley, commuter rail, and subway-elevated service through- out the region. Additionally, SEPTA administers the provision of demand response paratran- sit service through Customized Community Transportation (CCT Connect), formerly SEPTA ParaTransit. CCT Connect includes two types of service: ADA paratransit service, provided in all five coun- ties; and Shared-Ride Program (SRP) service for senior citizens in Philadelphia County only. The same vehicles are used for both services. The average total monthly ridership is about 138,000, with roughly an even split between SRP and ADA eligible individuals. SEPTA manages the eli- gibility determination process for both programs. The SRP is funded by the Pennsylvania Lottery and administered by Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT). The Lottery program pays for 85% of SRP trip costs, with cus- tomers or their sponsors paying the remaining 15% (currently $4), which is the same fare paid by ADA paratransit riders. The Philadelphia SRP was added to SEPTA ParaTransit in 1992. In the four suburban coun- ties, SEPTA provides ADA paratransit service only, using contract carriers. SEPTA schedules and dispatches service, which is provided in SEPTA-owned vehicles using contracted drivers. In Chester and Delaware counties, the suburban providers use their own vehicles to transport SRP and other customers under separate non-SEPTA contracts.

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Case Study Summaries 81 SEPTA also oversees the carriers, provides centralized driver training, and directly manages the reservation, scheduling and service monitoring functions for Philadelphia, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, and Montgomery counties. The private carriers are responsible for hiring and super- vising drivers, maintaining vehicles, and providing rides to customers as well as training drivers. Riders will soon be able to use an interactive voice recognition (IVR) system to schedule, verify, and cancel trips. Lessons Learned SEPTA was asked to take over provision of the Philadelphia SRP service as a result of service problems with the previous contractor. Customers from both programs had concerns about being mixed together and SEPTA conducted numerous meetings to explain the service changes and assure both sets of riders that the transition would go smoothly. SEPTA negotiated a long transition period with PennDOT to ensure that service would be provided without disruption. The service transition was coordinated over nearly a year, which allowed for a systematic hand-off of passenger eligibility information, subscription trip information, and reassignment of carrier contracts. Service delivery was also made easier by adopting the same operating poli- cies and procedures for both programs and by commingling customers on the same vehicles. Because the SRP pays 85% of the cost of providing transportation for individuals aged 65 and older, SEPTA allocates trips between the SRP and ADA paratransit programs based on age, help- ing to reduce the cost to the agency of providing ADA paratransit service. Furthermore, recent improvements in the scheduling and dispatching software have made it easier to manage trips and have enhanced recordkeeping. Space Coast Area Transit (SCAT) Cocoa, Florida Overview Space Coast Area Transit (SCAT) is located in Cocoa, Florida, and serves Brevard County, part of the Palm BayMelbourne Metro area located on the Atlantic Coast, 76 miles southeast of Orlando. The County is approximately 1,000 square miles and home to the Kennedy Space Center and Patrick Air Force Base. SCAT traces its origins to two separate entities, both created in 1974, to serve the population of Brevard County. Taking advantage of increased federal support for transit, the Brevard Tran- sit Authority (BTA) was created. The goal of BTA was to provide service throughout the county; however, the Brevard County Board of Commissioners and the municipalities in the central and northern areas of the County declined to participate. As a result, BTA served only the southern half of the county, providing fixed route service, with some contracts to provide door-to-door service for various social service agencies. At the same time, the Brevard County Board of Commissioners set up a transportation system called CATS, the Consolidated Agencies Transportation System, as a county agency under the Board of Commissioners. The system was made up of several non-profit agencies that operated transportation services such as the Area Agency on Aging and the local Association for Retarded Citizens (ARC). CATS' mission was to provide service to senior citizens for medical, shopping, and congregate meal services, as well as providing service to economically disadvantages people for medical trips. Since CATS had financial support from a number of sources, the cost to the County was minimal and there were no fares charged. Subscription service transportation for agencies was provided in the morning and afternoon and demand trips for seniors were provided midday.

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82 Resource Guide for Commingling ADA and Non-ADA Paratransit Riders Between 1974 and 1983, there was very little cooperation between BTA and CATS. In 1983, during an update of the area's Transit Development Plan, a two-year cooperative demonstration project was recommended. By October 1984, it was apparent that the project was succeeding and at the end of September 1985, the services were combined and SCAT was created to meet the needs of the seniors and people with disabilities. Initially, SCAT service was provided on a demand response basis; it was not until 1991 that fixed route service was initiated. With the passage of the ADA, SCAT was required to provide ADA complementary paratransit service. The service is provided on the existing paratransit fleet. The Transportation Disadvantaged (TD) service area includes all of Brevard County, while the ADA service area encompasses only the 3/4-mile corridor around fixed route services, a signifi- cantly smaller service area. The primary difference between ADA service and Paratransit service is that there is no eligibility required for Paratransit service. SCAT is responsible for the applica- tion process for ADA service. A person who rides under the Transportation Disadvantaged (TD) program must go through the ADA eligibility determination process in order to receive higher- level ADA service. In 1985, SCAT took over the Vanpool Program started by BTA and subcontracted the service to VPSI. Since then, the program has grown from six to more than 100 vehicles. SCAT purchases the vehicles and leases them to VPSI; VPSI then subleases vehicles to human service agencies or commuters. The vans are leased at a flat rate that includes maintenance, insurance and admin- istration. Agencies are able to provide a higher level of subscription service to their clients than SCAT paratransit service could provide. Agencies participating in this program may work together to help each other provide client transportation services, but there is no formal mech- anism for doing this. SCAT directly provides service, called "contracted routes," for some human service agencies. This service is demand response service using 30-foot buses. The agencies purchasing the ser- vice are responsible for eligibility determination and providing schedules to SCAT. A fourth program, Volunteers in Motion, was started in 1996 and provides service to those senior citizens considered "frail or elderly" who are living independently. The program is pro- vided in cooperation with the local Area Agency on Aging (AAA). SCAT provides the vehicles for use in the service. When the program started, the riders were required to be receiving other supportive services from the AAA. The Volunteers in Motion program is now a separate service within the AAA and the riders do not need to be receiving other services in order to receive trans- portation through the volunteer program. SCAT leverages its TD funds by directing paratransit passengers to the TD program, which allows for greater mobility for SCAT customers. In addition to the local TD funds, SCAT also receives state operating funds, federal operating funds, and has a contract with the Department of Children and Families for workshops. Lessons Learned According to the transit director, there are two lessons learned from the Brevard County expe- rience related to commingling. The first is that you tend to do what makes sense to get the job done. For example, for service to the VA clinic, Paratransit will provide service to a secure trans- fer point so that if able, the customer can take fixed route for part of the trip to the clinic. The second lesson is that there are still some "territorial" issues with riders, who may be sharing rides: the "it's my bus" syndrome. In the case of senior riders, it appears to be a matter of security or safety when dealing with different passengers.

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Case Study Summaries 83 The Rapid Grand Rapids, Michigan Overview Grand Rapids is located in Western Michigan and is the fourth largest population center in the state. The Rapid, formerly Grand Rapids Area Transit Authority, is organized under Michi- gan Act 196 of 1967. As an authority organized under this act, it has the power to pass and levy a millage on property tax to support services. This authority does not extend to the entire county but provides fixed route and paratransit service in the following municipalities: Grand Rapids, Wyoming, Kentwood, East Grand Rapids, Walker, and Grandville. Paratransit service is also pro- vided, under contract, to Ada, Alpine, Byron, Cascade, and Gaines townships. Paratransit ser- vice is provided by one contract operator. Prior to the passage of the ADA, paratransit service was provided for people with disabilities and for seniors (65 years of age and older). The service policies were the same; however, senior riders paid a higher fare than the passengers with disabilities. With passage of the ADA, the demand response system was named Go!Bus, which provided advanced reservation, door-to- door service for people age 65 and older or who qualify for ADA paratransit service. In 2000, with the passage of the first millage, a new program called Passenger Adaptive Sub- urban Service (PASS) was started. This service, initially designed as a deviated fixed route, was designed to facilitate access to bus routes for customers who were unable to access the nearest bus stop. Initially the service was provided separately by fixed route drivers. However due to the cost of the service, the program was made demand responsive. When this change occurred, ser- vice for PASS riders, Go!Bus riders, and senior riders were combined onto the paratransit fleet. However, in early 2004 the operators Union brought an action stating that it did not have the opportunity to bid on the PASS service. A settlement agreement was reached in which it was agreed that the Union would operate the PASS service during the evenings and weekends. In 2004, a transportation program funded by the Job Access and Reverse Commute (JARC) pro- gram called County Connection was created. JARC service was provided by the contracted carrier and by cab companies using separate vehicles. Service is available 24 hours a day. In an effort to better utilize vehicles and to promote on-time performance, the County Connection service began commingling riders with other paratransit service. For example, if a Go!Bus vehicle is running late and a County Connection vehicle is available, the County Connection vehicle will be sent to assist; or if a County Connection vehicle is running late a Go!Bus vehicle will be dispatched to assist. Cabs provide holiday and midnight to 6:00 a.m. service for County Connection service. There are differences in service policies among the three programs. Eligibility requirements also vary among passenger types. The service areas for each program are different and fares are markedly different, ranging from $2.60 for people with disabilities to $7 for seniors on Go!Bus. Fares for the PASS program are also $2.60 per ride, including a free transfer to a fixed route bus. The County Connection riders pay $14 per trip for advance reservations. The Rapid uses software to manage its programs. The data for all programs are maintained in one database. MDTs were installed and became operational in October 2007. In addition to required NTD reporting, quarterly reports are made to the townships. Monthly board reports containing passengers, trips, and cost per program are prepared. Service for the Go!Bus program is split out by ADA service and senior service. Lessons Learned There were four lessons learned at this site. First, plan ahead, but be flexible and adapt as needed. An example of this was the union issue with regard to the PASS program. It was also

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84 Resource Guide for Commingling ADA and Non-ADA Paratransit Riders mentioned that no matter how well you plan, you cannot account for all contingencies. Second, make sure that as you add new programs you continue to meet your ADA paratransit require- ments. Third, keep the board and public informed of your plans and progress. Try to minimize change as much as you possibly can. And fourth, as you move forward, take baby steps. It is easier to add new features than to take them away. Transit Authority of River City (TARC) Louisville, Kentucky Overview The Transit Authority of River City (TARC) was created in 1974 as an independent transit authority with a board of directors appointed by the mayor of Louisville. TARC is the largest public transit agency in Kentucky with a fleet of 280 fixed route transit vehicles and 90 paratran- sit vehicles. All but four fixed routes are operated internally and all paratransit service is provided by contractors. When the authority was created in 1974, it provided fixed route services with vehicles that were not accessible. In response to the needs of people with disabilities, TARC contracted for the pro- vision of paratransit service. From the inception of the service, paratransit service was for persons with disabilities who were unable to use fixed route service. During the 1990s, TARC started a Job Access and Reverse Commute (JARC) program and trips were provided using the same vehicles as ADA paratransit. More recently, contracts were entered into to provide human service transportation. The newest contract, begun in 2007, is with the Area Agency on Aging (AAA) to provide medical transportation under Title III of the Older Americans Act (OAA). The AAA continues to provide its own transportation service to its congregate meal sites at senior centers. TARC also has two other small contracts: one with Catholic Charities and the other with the Health Department. Both of these services are provided using the same vehicles as the paratransit service. The Catholic Charities service is for elderly refugees going to English as a Second Language (ESL) classes. The Health Department contract is for a program called Healthy Start, which is designed to transport unwed mothers who are economically disadvantaged to classes. The basic service policies for all services are the same including days and hours of service and the advance reservation period; however, for trips provided under Title III, a 30-day advance reservation is allowed (compared with up to 7 days in advance for other services). Catholic Char- ities and the Health Department furnish a list of clients needing rides to be picked up and TARC schedules the rides. The Night Owl Service transports passengers, regardless of disability, if they have a job that starts or ends between 11:00 p.m. and 5:00 a.m. There is some variation in the service area with ADA paratransit provided within the 3/4-mile corridor around fixed route service. The service area for the Title III medical transportation cov- ers all of Jefferson County and TARC will go out of county to provide the service as long as one of the legs or the trip originates within Jefferson County. The JARC transportation program also serves the entire county. The Healthy Start Program primarily serves the City of Louisville, but there is no restriction limiting this service to the city. The service and operating parameters are the same for all services including the on-time pick- up window; drivers will wait up to 5 minutes for passengers within the on-time pickup window and the maximum ride time for all services is set at 1 hour and 20 minutes. TARC's ADA service uses advanced technology. The transit agency has a sophisticated scheduling/dispatch system and all authority-owned vehicles have MDTs with AVL. It was antic- ipated that this technology would be useful in tracking the riders by various programs, though

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Case Study Summaries 85 TARC has had problems in using the system to maintain the recordkeeping relative to rides by funding source. With regard to OAA Title III funds, the budget is limited and TARC has not found an effective way to set up the software to help ensure that they do not over-expend on the Title III service. Responsibility for ADA eligibility determination rests with TARC, although each contracting agency handles its own eligibility determination. Increasingly, TARC is seeing passengers with dual eligibility, particularly between ADA and Title III, because customers are becoming familiar with the benefits of each program and registering for both. For example, if eligible, an ADA cus- tomer will also register under Title III for free rides to medical appointments. Or, a Title III rider will sign up with ADA to take advantage of the ability to take a trip for any purpose. This crossover between programs is about 5:1 in favor of the ADA riders calling and qualifying for free OAA trips. Far fewer OAA riders have crossed over to paratransit. Fares for ADA, Healthy Start, and JARC are $2.50 per ride. Title III regulations do not permit charging fares for service, but do allow donations for service. Because TARC does not want to have drivers responsible for accepting donations from riders, every two to three months a letter is sent to Title III riders asking for a donation. The letter details the regular fare for service and also details the cost to provide a trip. TARC does get a small amount of contributions using this method. The service provided for Catholic Charities is paid for by Catholic Charities with money from a federal grant and trips for the Health Department are paid for using local funds. ADA service is paid through federal formula funds (Section 5307), the Local Mass Transit Trust Fund, and fares. The State of Kentucky provides a small amount of additional funding. Most of the reporting is geared toward reconciling the invoices from the contractors. In addi- tion to reporting required for the National Transit Database (NTD), data such as mileage, trips, fares collected, and no shows are collected and used to verify vendor billing. On-time performance and ride length data are routinely collected. In addition, for the OAA program, data reporting unduplicated persons served must also be collected. TARC has experienced problems keeping track of trips by program using the current software. The agency is required to maintain information on the different programs and planned to use the tools in its software to help with this, but the agency has been unable to successfully do so. Lessons Learned TARC reported no resistance from riders to commingling on the same vehicles; it was accepted as a logical course of action to improve productivity. What TARC did find as a result of commingling was that some passengers (about 100 of the approximately 4,000 active) decided to become dually registered for both ADA and Title III trips. One challenge that TARC specifically mentioned was the ability to maintain the necessary infor- mation on the different programs for billing purposes. Gathering accurate information, trip counts, and/or unduplicated persons served, are vital. As noted, the use of software to do this makes this process easier. According to TARC, the software vendor said that the software could perform this function, but TARC had not been able to make that happen as of the time of the case study research. Votran South Daytona, Florida Overview Votran operates transit service in Volusia County, which is located on the Atlantic coast of Florida, approximately 100 miles south of Jacksonville. The county covers 1,207 square miles

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86 Resource Guide for Commingling ADA and Non-ADA Paratransit Riders with a population of approximately 470,000. The City of De Land is the county seat and has a population of approximately 22,000 people. Major population centers are located in Daytona Beach and Deltona. In 1975, the Volusia County Council created the Volusia Transit Company (Votran). At the time it was created, Votran was responsible for providing fixed route service in the Greater Daytona Beach area and countywide paratransit service was provided by the Council on Aging. The Coun- cil on Aging provided service from 1975 through 1994, when Votran assumed the operation of the countywide paratransit service. In 1979, the State of Florida created the Transportation Disadvantaged (TD) Program. The act, reenacted in 1989 created the Transportation Disadvantaged Commission (now the Com- mission for the Transportation Disadvantaged) and created a network of local community trans- portation coordinators (CTCs) for each county; Votran is the CTC for Volusia County. Under this program, transportation services are provided for those persons who are considered to be transportation disadvantaged, including children, or those who because of physical or mental disability, income status, or inability to drive due to age or disability are unable to transport themselves or to purchase transportation and have no other form of transportation available. These persons are, therefore, dependent upon others to obtain access to health care, employ- ment, education, shopping, or medically necessary or life-sustaining activities. In 1994, as a result of the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act, an ADA workgroup identified the need for improvement in the provision of paratransit service in Volusia County. This workgroup was composed of Votran staff and disability advocates, including members of a local group called the Handicapped Adults of Volusia County. With Votran's General Manager playing an instrumental role, and with the backing of Volusia County, Votran assumed opera- tion of the countywide paratransit program from the Council on Aging. The services assumed by Votran included services for Council on Aging passengers, TD passengers, and Medicaid passen- gers. Since the effort was a cooperative effort, the process of assuming operation of paratransit services went smoothly and quickly. A recent change in the paratransit service occurred on February 1, 2008. On that date, Votran ceased to be the Medicaid provider in Volusia County. The decision was based upon a change in how Votran was going to be reimbursed for service. Votran had been getting reimbursed for Medicaid service on a per trip basis. Florida's Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA), the state agency with responsibility for the Medicaid program, changed the method of reimbursement to a flat rate per month. Votran would be paid a set amount for Medicaid service each month and any expense for Medicaid service incurred above the flat rate would have to be absorbed by Volu- sia County. An analysis showed a potential $100,000 liability for the County. As a result, it was decided not to bid on the contract. Votran continues to provide Medicaid transportation under the Medicaid Waiver program, which is funded from a different funding stream. Votran demand response service is operated directly by Votran and under contract with private providers. Taxi service is used to supplement this service. About 60% of the service is provided directly by Votran and the balance is provided by the subcontract providers. Each of the sub- contractors is assigned to a service area. Votran operates 11 runs on the west side of the county and 23 on the east; vendors operate 5 runs on the west and 13 on the east. Votran is responsible for taking trip reservations and scheduling trips to runs and each operator is responsible for dis- patching its own vehicles. McDonald Transit contracts with Volusia County to provide Votran's management. Votran has made a conscious decision that all customers are treated the same, regardless of program participation. All riders are subject to the same policies, which are detailed in the Votran Gold Riders Guide. Eligibility determination for ADA or TD services is the responsibility of

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Case Study Summaries 87 Votran. The Council on Aging determines which of its clients they will fund, and Medicaid coor- dinators verify eligibility for the Medicaid Waiver Program. The service area for the ADA program is different from the service area for the TD, Aging, and Medicaid Waiver Programs. The TD, Aging, and Medicaid program service area includes all of Volusia County; the ADA service area is 3/4-miles around the fixed route service. This difference has caused some confusion among customers. The fare is $2.50 per trip; however, as stated in the Riders Guide, the fare may depend upon sponsorship. For example, a Council on Aging rider pays no fare because the Council on Aging pays the entire cost of the trip. This, too, can cause some confusion if a rider is not sponsored by an agency and wonders why they must pay a fare and some other customers do not have to pay a fare. Votran receives funding from Section 5307 (Urban) transportation funds, Section 5311 (Rural) funds, funds from the Florida Commission for the Transportation Disadvantaged, and Medicaid. Votran also receives some funding from the School Board for the transportation of students with disabilities. Votran uses software to manage all of its programs. The data for all programs are maintained in one database. Mobile data terminals (MDTs) were installed and became operational in Janu- ary 2007. Automatic vehicle location (AVL) has been installed on all Votran vehicles and partial AVL installation has occurred on vendor vehicles. Votran is also planning to install interactive voice recognition (IVR) technology. Votran collects all data from its vehicles via the use of the MDTs and manually inputs data from vendor runs. Using both the software's standard and custom reports, Votran reports trips by funding source, trips, miles and hours of service by vendor, Canceled/No Show trips by vendor, and On-Time Performance by vendor. Staff indicated that they are able to use the software to generate the necessary billing and reports. It was indicated that the technology has helped with the scheduling. The new technology has not had an effect on commingling of service. Lessons Learned There were two lessons cited. First, time should be taken to educate riders on how to use the service. It is important that the riders understand that the service is shared ride. Second, providers must ensure that the agencies and their clients understand the differences in service area, based upon the program. Because the TD program encompasses the entire county while the ADA pro- gram covers a much smaller service area, questions about inconsistencies in service area continue to arise from time to time. Waukesha Metro Transit (Metro) Waukesha, Wisconsin Overview Waukesha Metro Transit (Metro) began as a city transit service more than 25 years ago, ser- ving the City of Waukesha; a separate transit service for Waukesha County was operated by the County. In 2003, it was determined that the City and County transit systems should be merged, providing for improved cost efficiency with one administrative structure. After developing the appropriate inter-governmental agreements, the City assumed responsibility for transit service provision in the county. With the merger, the City's transit system essentially doubled in size with both fixed route and ADA paratransit services provided through a mix of direct operation and contracting. In the mid-1990s, ADA paratransit was provided directly by Waukesha Metro. With the merger of the City and County transit services in 2003, the City took over the County's ADA paratransit service, which was run on a contract basis by a private, non-profit agency. After the

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88 Resource Guide for Commingling ADA and Non-ADA Paratransit Riders merger, Metro then had two different ADA paratransit operators--its own directly operated service and the private agency. This non-profit had been operating commingled service for the County, mixing the County's ADA paratransit riders with other non-ADA riders, primarily non- emergency Medicaid riders on the same vehicles. This practice has continued after the merger of the City and County transit services, with Metro "inheriting" commingled ADA paratransit service. Waukesha Metro, however, subsidizes only the trips for ADA paratransit riders, not the other non-ADA riders. Service and operating parameters are basically the same for the City and County ADA para- transit services. However, the policy and procedures that govern the non-ADA riders, those that are commingled on the County service by the private contractor, are different and not under the purview of Waukesha Metro. Waukesha Metro has no authority over or responsibility for the other non-ADA riders. Waukesha Metro's city-based ADA service uses advanced technology. The transit agency has a sophisticated scheduling/dispatching system and the vehicles have mobile data terminals (MDTs) with automatic vehicle location (AVL). Use of MDTs/AVL by the contractor would greatly improve the contractor's ability to track operating data by rider, particularly revenue hour and revenue mileage data. Such data would improve the level and detail of operating data reported to Waukesha Metro and would help resolve reporting issues, which is the one area where the com- mingling of riders practiced by the private contractor has caused problems. Waukesha Metro has had difficulty with NTD reporting; figures for the contractor's hours and miles seem to over- report the data, since only a portion of those data can truly be attributed to the ADA service. Given the commingled service, Waukesha Metro management takes particular effort to review operating data of the contractor, including a review of driver manifests on an ongoing basis, to ensure that its ADA paratransit riders are receiving effective and quality service. With a commingled service and ADA and non-ADA riders traveling on the same vehicles, and where the transit agency has no contractual or financial responsibility over the other riders, travel time is one area where there could potentially be problems. Waukesha Metro's review, however, has not found performance issues arising from the practice of commingling. Lessons Learned Waukesha Metro was somewhat skeptical when it "inherited" the commingled service from the County at the time of the merger. However, experience has shown that the mixing of ADA riders who are Waukesha Metro's passengers and the non-ADA riders runs smoothly, at least from the perspective of Waukesha Metro. Furthermore, the transit agency realizes that it benefits from commingling, as the contractor is able to provide the ADA service at a lower passenger trip cost than it would otherwise, if the service was dedicated to ADA paratransit. The contractor's costs compare favorably with that of the directly operated ADA paratransit service, with the contrac- tor's cost per passenger trip at $18.31, compared with the directly operated service at $26 per pas- senger trip. Data reporting, however, has been one area where the commingled service has been an issue.