2013 Maryland Code
§ 7-506 - Hearings
(a) (1) Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section, until a public hearing is held on the matter, the Administration may not:
(i) Fix or revise any fare or rate charged the general public;
(ii) Establish or abandon any bus or rail route listed on a published timetable;
(iii) Change a bus or rail route alignment listed on a published timetable, unless the change is needed because of temporary construction or changes in the road network;
(iv) Reduce the frequency, number of days, or days of service for a commuter bus or commuter rail route without substituting a comparable level of service, unless the reduction is temporary or a result of:
1. A natural disaster;
2. Weather or other emergency conditions;
3. Schedule adjustments required by a third party that operates service on the same right-of-way; or
4. Other circumstances beyond the control of the Administration; or
(v) Establish or abandon a rail transit station.
(2) The Administration may only implement a change described in paragraph (1) of this subsection during the time period that begins 6 weeks after the public hearing and ends 6 months after the public hearing.
(3) (i) If the Administration gives inadequate or defective notice of a public hearing on a change described in paragraph (1) of this subsection, the Administration may not implement the change unless the Administration makes a reasonable effort to correct the inadequacy or defect and a legally sufficient public hearing is held.
(ii) For the purposes of this paragraph, notice shall be considered inadequate or defective if:
1. The Administration does not comply with the newspaper publication requirements under subsection (d) of this section;
2. The Administration does not comply with the notice requirements for affected jurisdictions prescribed under subsection (d) of this section;
3. At least 30% of the Administration’s facilities are not posted as required under subsection (d) of this section; or
4. The notice contains erroneous information.
(4) A public hearing required under paragraph (1) of this subsection shall be at a place and time that is reasonably accessible and convenient to the patrons of the service to be affected.
(5) The Administration shall accept written comments for 30 days after a hearing held on a change described in paragraph (1) of this subsection.
(b) The Administration may add service on a new alignment branching off of an existing route without holding a public hearing, if the addition of the new alignment does not alter the existing route.
(c) (1) The following persons may request the Administration to hold a hearing on any rentals, rates, fares, fees, or other charges of the Administration or any service rendered by the transit facilities owned or controlled by the Administration:
(i) Any person served by or using the transit facilities;
(ii) The People’s Counsel, as a representative of the general public; and
(iii) Any private carrier operating in the District.
(2) The request for a hearing shall:
(i) Be in writing;
(ii) State the matter sought to be heard; and
(iii) Set forth clearly the grounds for the request.
(3) As soon as possible after the Administration receives a request for a hearing, a designated employee of the Administration shall confer on the matter with the person requesting the hearing. After the conference, if the Administration considers the matter meritorious and of general significance, it may call a hearing.
(d) (1) The Administration shall give at least a 30-day notice before a hearing.
(2) The notice shall be:
(i) Published once a week for 2 successive weeks in two or more newspapers of daily circulation throughout the District;
(ii) Posted in all of the Administration’s offices, stations, and terminals and all of the vehicles and rolling stock used in revenue service by the mode of transportation that will be affected by the proposed action described in subsection (a) of this section; and
(iii) Provided to the governing body of each county or municipal corporation affected by a change in transit service or fare or rate described under subsection (a)(1) of this section.
(3) The Administration may establish a process for providing notice to local governments under paragraph (2)(iii) of this subsection.
(4) The 30-day period begins when the notice first appears in the newspaper.
(e) Before calling a hearing under this section, the Administration shall file at its main office and make available for public inspection:
(1) Its report on the subject matter of the hearing; and
(2) If the hearing was requested under subsection (c) of this section, the written request for the hearing and all documents filed in support of it.
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