P.O. Box 160
Contact: Mike Horan
RELEASE: May 8, 2007
(TRENTON) – New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC) Chief Administrator Sharon A. Harrington, today, announced that the MVC will grant Web-based access to driver status information to privately-owned school transportation providers for a fee of $2 per inquiry.
Effective immediately, the new access will allow private school transportation providers that have an account through the MVC’s Customer Abstract Information Retrieval (CAIR) online system to obtain a driver’s name, license expiration, endorsements, restrictions and class of license, as well as verify whether or not a driver’s current license privilege is suspended or is in good standing.
Prior to this option becoming available, these school transportation providers could only acquire driver status information about its employees from a full Driver Abstract, which companies are required by New Jersey law to obtain annually for each of its drivers, for a $10 fee. This method had the potential of becoming costly if companies had to look up drivers more than once in the same year.
This new option provides private companies, which make up 70 percent of all school transportation providers and account for 68 percent of New Jersey’s total school bus fleet, with access to essential driver status information at a reduced cost. With no limit on the number of inquiries, this easy and inexpensive service will give private providers the opportunity to more frequently check their drivers.
“Providing the tools to better monitor drivers is one more way that the MVC can help the school transportation industry ensure that its employees are properly credentialed and in good standing at all times,” said Harrington. “This service, along with the MVC’s strict driver licensing and school vehicle inspection processes, will go a long way in making students as safe as possible when traveling to and from school.”
The MVC considers a school transportation vehicle to be any vehicle that transports students to or from school, a school-related activity, day camp, summer day camp, summer residence camp, nursery school, child care center, preschool center or other similar place of education. Such vehicles include school buses, small school vehicles, dual-purpose vehicles and summer camp vehicles.
To transport students in New Jersey, drivers must meet specific, mandated standards. They must have a Commercial Driver License (CDL) with P (passenger) and S (school bus) endorsements. To obtain a CDL and the proper endorsements, drivers must undergo a criminal background check and a complete medical review, as well as meet other criteria. To keep the necessary endorsements, drivers must submit an updated United States Department of Transportation (DOT) physical examination form and a copy of the Medical Examiner’s Certificate every two years and fingerprints at least four weeks before license renewal.