City Transit System, Fort Smith, AR, 2-28-01
400 Seventh St. S.W.
|February 28, 2001|
Re: FTA Complaint No. 00-0284
Dear (Name Withheld):
This letter responds to your complaint against the City Transit System and potential noncompliance with Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (the ADA) and/or the Department of Transportation's (DOT) implementing regulations at 49 CFR Past 27, 37, and 38. The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) Office of Civil Rights is responsible for civil rights compliance and monitoring, which includes ensuring that providers of public transportation properly implement the ADA, the DOT ADA regulations, and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.
In the FTA complaint investigation process, we analyze the complainant's allegations for possible ADA deficiencies by the transit provider. If we identify what may be a violation, we first attempt to provide technical assistance to address it by assisting the transit provider to comply with the ADA. If FTA cannot resolve apparent violations of the ADA or the DOT ADA regulations by voluntary means, formal enforcement proceedings may be initiated against the public transportation provider which may result in the termination of Federal funds. FTA also may refer the matter to the U.S. Department of Justice for enforcement.
Because of the limitation in resources, the majority complaint investigations are conducted by telephone and written inquiry. In a few circumstances, where time and resources permit, investigations may be complemented by other means, such as compliance reviews or other on-site action. A finding of no violation of a particular allegation should be understood to apply specifically to the facts and circumstances at issue. Such a determination is not intended to express an opinion as to the overall ADA compliance of that transit property.
We understand your specific allegation to be that:
- City Transit System ADA Complementary Paratransit provider does not operate the system after 7 PM on week days and Saturdays and ADA Complementary Paratransit service is not provided on Sundays.
We reviewed the information provided by you and City Transit System and made a determination based on our analysis of the information in relation to the DOT ADA regulations. Our determination on your allegation is stated below:
The DOT ADA regulation at CFR 37.131(e) states that, "The complementary paratransit service shall be available throughout the same hours and days as the entity’s fixed route service."
An examination of the information submitted by you and the City Transit System shows that the ADA Complementary Paratransit service operates on the same days and hours as the fixed-route system and serves passengers within the 3/4 mile corridor along the fixed-route. The fixed-route system does not operate after 7 PM during the weekdays and on Saturdays. In addition, the fixed route system does not operate on Sundays because two ridership surveys showed that the riding public had no interest in the Sunday service.
In your complaint and in a conversation with you, you stated that the ADA Complementary Paratransit hours of operation should be extended to accommodate your transportation needs beyond 7 PM. Decisions to extend, eliminate, or modify hours, routes, etc. are made at the local levels and FTA is prohibited by the Federal Transit Laws, as codified under 49 U.S.C., Section 5324(c) "Prohibitions Against Regulating Operations and Charges," from becoming involved in local decisions regarding transit operations unless there is a discriminatory practice. We do not fund [find}such a practice and this means that we are unable to assist you in your attempt to persuade City Transit System to extend their Saturday hours of operation and discontinue the practice of no service on Sundays. Based on the above, City Transit System did not violate section 37.13e) of the DOT/ADA regulation.
If you have any questions regarding this decision, please contact Eugene Jenkins, Equal Opportunity Specialist, on FTA's toll free ADA Assistance Line at 1-888-446-4511, or at his electronic mail address, firstname.lastname@example.org. Please identify the FTA complaint number in any correspondence with this office. Thank you for bringing your concerns to our attention.
Sincerely, /signed/ Cheryl L. Hershey
ADA Group Leader
Office of Civil Rights