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H.F. No. 462 - Various Transportation Provisions (Minnesota Laws 2020, Chapter 100)
 
Author: Senator Scott J. Newman
 
Prepared By: Alexis C. Stangl, Senate Counsel (651/296-4397)
 
Date: May 29, 2020



 

Section 1 requires a road authority to notify the owner of a private road of any intent to make repairs or conduct work before starting the repairs or work. The notice must notify the owner that the road authority may deem the road to be a public road if the statutory requirements are met. This section applies to new work starting on or after August 1, 2020.

Sections 2, 23, and 26 are “turnbacks” of state highways to the respective counties. One turnback modifies a trunk highway in South St. Paul and the other is a highway in Stearns County.

Section 3 makes a technical correction to the designation of the Specialist Noah Pierce Bridge.

Sections 4, 5, and 6 require a temporary vehicle permit to be displayed where a license plate is normally displayed instead of in the rear window. The permit must be plainly visible. Eliminates the requirement that an auto dealer forward information to the Department of Public Safety. Eliminates a dealer recordkeeping requirement. These sections are effective January 1, 2021, or upon deployment of the new motor vehicle title and registration information system, whichever is earlier.

Section 7 eliminates the requirement for a driver to provide a physical address when exchanging information after a collision. The person is not required to show his or her driver’s license to the other person.

Sections 8, 9, and 10 allow a new or used school bus sold by a dealer to operate with an interim inspection certificate until the annual inspection certificate is obtained. The dealer may inspect the bus to determine if it applies with state law. If so, the dealer may affix an interim inspection certificate to the school bus. The interim certificate is valid until the next annual inspection, but must not be valid for more than 12 months. A person who operates a bus without a valid inspection certificate is guilty of a misdemeanor. These sections are effective the day following final enactment.

Sections 11 and 30 establish the number of escort vehicles required for overdimensional loads. The number and location of escort vehicles depends on the dimensions of the load and the type of road. The current subdivision on escort vehicles is repealed. This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sections 12 and 13 require the driver who operates a type A school bus, multifunction school activity bus, or type III vehicle to have in their possession a current medical examiner’s certificate. If the bus driver is convicted of specified offenses while employed by the entity that owns the bus, the driver must report the conviction to the employer within ten days. If a bus driver’s license is suspended, revoked, or canceled, the driver must notify the driver’s employer within one day of the loss of driving privilege.

Sections 14 and 15 allows a person to request an autism spectrum identifier or a mental health identifier on a driver’s license or Minnesota ID card. Under current law, there is a single identifier for both autism spectrum disorders and mental health conditions.

Sections 16, 17, 18, and 30 modify Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) regulation of special transportation service (STS) providers who receive state or federal funds. A STS provider must keep a record of trips. The commissioner may refuse to issue a certificate of compliance if a person is not on that provider’s active roster. If a provider has failed to pay the required decal fee, the commissioner may suspend the providers certificate of compliance. Repeals obsolete language.

Sections 19 and 21 provide for regulations of stand-alone meteorological towers. The towers must be marked as specified. The owner of a tower must provide notice to the commissioner about the towner being erected. The owner must also pay a fee. The commissioner of transportation must maintain records on the towers and provide information on their location on the department’s website. An owner of a tower who violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor.

Section 20 requires the Legislative Auditor to conduct four salary and benefit surveys of certain police departments over the next ten years. The survey must include specified information. The Legislative Auditor must compile the findings into a report to provide to the legislature. The legislature intends to use the survey to compare salaries between police departments and the State Patrol and to make appropriate increases to patrol trooper salaries.

Section 22 modifies the Driver and Vehicle Systems Oversight Committee membership so that if the Blue Ribbon Council on Information Technology is dissolved, the chair of the council continues to serve on the committee. This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Section 24 extends the driver’s license expiration dates for people whose license expires the month after the emergency ends. The extension is to the end of the second full month after the month in which the emergency expires. This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Section 25 requires the commissioner of transportation, the commissioner of public safety, and the chair of the Metropolitan Council to report to the legislature on the federal COVID-19 funds spent. This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Section 27 allows the commissioner of public safety to issue a noncompliant driver’s license or ID card without requiring a new photograph or eye examination if the applicant’s name, address, signature, or card number have not changed. This section applies to applications made on or before June 30, 2021. This section is effective two weeks following final enactment or upon completion of the changes required, whichever is earlier.

Section 28 requires a school bus driver to use warning lights and the stop arm signal when stopped on a street to deliver food, schoolwork, supplies, and other items for students. This provision only applies during the current peacetime public health emergency. This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Section 29 allows Aitkin County to deposit road and bridge fund tax collections into a single account for all unorganized townships instead of keeping a separate account for each. The funds in the account may be spent in any unorganized township in the county. This section is effective upon local approval.

 
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