Connecticut Law Steps Up School Bus Driver Licensing Rules

HARTFORD, Conn. – Gov. M. Jodi Rell has signed a bill overhauling background check requirements on applicants for school bus driver licenses.

The state’s Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) will be required under the new law to deny a license for anyone convicted of a serious criminal offense within five years of completing his or her sentence, or for anyone convicted of or arrested for a crime associated with child abuse.

The new law also requires the DMV to periodically notify school districts of any CDL or passenger endorsement that has been suspended, withdrawn or revoked.

The bill extends required random drug testing for drivers of vehicles carrying 10 or fewer students and also increases penalties for failing to implement the required testing or failing to remove an operator who is not properly licensed.

In addition, the bill requires that a school bus company’s name, phone number and the bus number be conspicuously painted in black lettering on the rear and sides of each school bus.

The law is effective immediately, except for the bus painting requirement, which is effective Oct. 1.

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