2019 Massachusetts General Laws
Part I - Administration of the Government
Title XXII - Corporations
Chapter 159a - Common Carriers of Passengers by Motor Vehicle
Section 11a - Charter, School or Special Service Vehicles; License; Rules and Regulations
Section 11A. No person shall operate or offer to provide service by means of any motor vehicle carrying ten or more persons, including the driver, upon any public way in charter service, as hereinafter defined, unless he shall have obtained from the department a license to engage in the business of rendering such service and certifying that the rendering of such service is consistent with the public interest, that public convenience and necessity require it and that the applicant is fit, willing and able properly to perform such service. ''Charter service'' is hereby defined as the transportation of groups of persons who, pursuant to a common purpose and under a single contract, and at a fixed charge for the vehicle have acquired the exclusive use of the vehicle for the duration of a particular trip or tour and in such a manner as not to be subject to section one. The department may, after public hearing, grant or refuse to grant a license to engage in the business of rendering charter service, and may, after notice and hearing, suspend or revoke such a license for cause. Notice of such public hearing shall be given to each holder of a license issued under this section who is doing business in the city or town in which the proposed service is to be located or in contiguous cities or towns and to each holder of a certificate issued under section seven who is doing business in such city or town. Any such license shall remain in force except while so suspended, until so revoked.
No person shall operate any motor vehicle carrying ten or more persons, including the driver, upon any public way in special service, or school service, as hereinafter defined, unless he shall have obtained from the department a permit to render such special service, or school service, certifying that the rendering of such special service or school service is consistent with the public interest, and public convenience requires it. ''Special service'' is hereby defined as the transportation by motor vehicle over a route other than one certified to the applicant under section seven, for any special purpose, event or occasion or series of events or occasions, or under contract to a business establishment or for the transportation of employees to a place of employment, of a number of passengers to whom the carrier itself, or some person in its behalf, has sold or intends to sell tickets for transportation service, whether such tickets are for transportation alone or are in the form of combination tickets. The application for a special service permit shall designate the specific point or points of origin and destination proposed to be served. ''School service'' is hereby defined as the transportation, by motor vehicle over a route other than one certified to the applicant under section seven, of children to and from school and summer day camp. No special service or school service permit shall be issued in any city or town as the point of origin other than to the holder of a certificate under section seven who has a certificated route in said city or town, unless there is no such certificate holder in such city or town, or unless the holder of said certificate is not fit, willing and able properly to perform the special service or school service applied for, and no such permit shall be issued to operate over a route over which or approximately over which a carrier has a certificate to operate under section seven, if said carrier is fit, willing and able properly to perform the special service or school service applied for. The department may grant or refuse to grant a permit for such special service, or school service, upon application, after not less than seven days' notice by mail directed to such holders of certificates issued under section seven and of permits issued under this section serving the cities or towns of origin named in such application as might, in the judgment of the department, be interested in such service. In the event that the department considers that any objection filed with it before the return date warrants further consideration, it shall hold such hearing on such notice as it may require, and shall thereupon grant or refuse to grant such permit. Special service permits shall be granted only to the holder of a license issued under this section authorizing him to engage in the business of rendering charter service and the department may, after notice and hearing, revoke such permit for cause. Such special service or school service shall not be subject to section one.
The department may make suitable and reasonable rules, orders and regulations covering the operation of motor vehicles both under section one and in such charter service, special service, or school service, and may revise, alter, amend or annul the same. The department shall also establish minimum mileage rates for any such charter service operated in intrastate commerce within the commonwealth, and may revise, alter, amend or annul such rates, and in determining such rates the department shall consider as part of the rate base the elements of waiting service and type of equipment employed. The terms ''charter service'', ''special service'' or ''school service'' shall not include the transportation of school children to and from school pursuant to a written contract with a municipality or municipal board or with the authorities of such school, provided that the charges for such transportation are borne by such municipality or municipal board or school and provided, further, that no special charges for such transportation are made by the municipality or municipal board or such school on account of the children transported; or the operation of a motor vehicle so used and owned and operated by such authorities; or the operation of sight-seeing automobiles licensed under chapter three hundred and ninety-nine of the acts of nineteen hundred and thirty-one.
Sections six, eight, nine, eleven, thirteen, fourteen and fifteen shall apply to the operation of charter service under a license granted under this section and to special service or school service under a permit issued under this section, but vehicles for which vehicle permits have been issued under section eight and drivers who hold drivers' licenses under section nine shall not be required to have additional vehicle permits and drivers' licenses for operation in charter service or special service.
No licensee under this section shall change his address, place of business, the place where his buses or any of them are usually garaged, or his base of operations from one city or town to another, unless such change shall be approved by the department after a public hearing and notice to the holders of other licenses under this section in the city or town into which said change is sought to be made, and in the adjacent cities and towns thereto, and to holders of certificates issued under section seven, who are doing business in such city or town, and unless a finding is made by said department that such change is consistent with the public interest and that public convenience and necessity require such change.
This section shall not be construed so as to prohibit the use of school buses under contract to a school system in transporting pupils to and from summer school and school sponsored extracurricular activities.