H                                                                                                                                                    1




Short Title:      School Bus Safety Enhancement Act.



Representative Boswell.

For a complete list of sponsors, refer to the North Carolina General Assembly web site.

Referred to:


April 10, 2017


AN ACT to enhance school bus safety.

The General Assembly of North Carolina enacts:

SECTION 1.  G.S. 115C‑248(a) reads as rewritten:

"(a)      The superintendent of each local school administrative unit, shall cause each school bus owned or operated by such local school administrative unit to be inspected at least once each 30 42 days during the school year for mechanical defects, or other defects which may affect the safe operation of such bus. A report of such inspection, together with the recommendations of the person making the inspection, shall be filed promptly in the office of the superintendent of such local school administrative unit, and a copy thereof shall be forwarded to the principal of the school to which such bus is assigned."

SECTION 2.(a)  G.S. 143‑300.1(a)(2) reads as rewritten:

"(2)      The driver is a paid or an unpaid school bus driver trainee under the supervision of an authorized employee of the Department of Transportation, Division of Motor Vehicles, or an authorized employee of that board or a county or city administrative unit thereof," 

SECTION 2.(b)  Local boards of education may use State funds appropriated to the transportation allotment for local school administrative units each fiscal year to provide pay to prospective school bus driver trainees to increase retention of trainees during the recommended process for school bus driver training and certification established by the Department of Transportation, Division of Motor Vehicles, and the Department of Public Instruction.

SECTION 3.  There is appropriated from the General Fund to the Department of Public Instruction the sum of nineteen million one hundred seventy thousand seventy dollars ($19,170,070) in recurring funds for the 2017‑2018 fiscal year to provide additional funds to local school administrative units for the transportation allotment to be used to increase the maximum hourly rate for school bus drivers that can be paid for with State funds by two dollars ($2.00) per hour. The increase in the hourly rate shall enhance the ability for local school administrative units to attract and retain school bus drivers to increase the number of experienced school bus drivers operating school buses in the State.

SECTION 4.  Sections 2 and 3 of this act become effective July 1, 2017. The remainder of this act is effective when it becomes law. Section 1 of this act applies to inspections performed on or after that date.