FTA Drug and Alcohol Regulation Updates
Issue 23, page 4


Where to Find? .....

The current list of DHHS certified labs is published the first week of each month and is printed in the Federal Register under the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration heading (SAMHSA). Only those labs certified can be used for FTA drug testing. The list should be checked monthly as new labs are being added and others are being removed. Website location: http:/www.health.org/workplace.

To verify the certification status of laboratory, DHHS has established a telephone HELPLINE (800) 843-4971.

 The information presented on this page should be used to update Chapter 10 of the Implementation Guidelines.

One DOT MIS Form Proposed

     On September 30, 2002 the Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Office of Drug and Alcohol Policy Compliance (ODAPC) published a notice in the Federal Register (Vol. 67, No. 189, pages 61306-61313) proposing to revise the Management Information System (MIS) forms currently used within the six DOT operating administrations for submission of annual drug and alcohol program data. The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) is one of the modal administrations covered under the proposed rule. The purpose of the proposed provision is to standardize the reporting process between modes, reduce the data reporting burden on transportation employers and streamline the annual reporting procedure through the use of a one-page MIS data collection form.

     The one page form will include a single set of instructions for all transportation employers regardless of mode. Not all data elements are relevant to all modes; consequently some employers will need to omit data elements that do not apply to their appropriate operating administration. These reporting differences will be highlighted in the corresponding instructions. The revised MIS form and corresponding instructions will subsequently be incorporated into Part 40.

     The new form will capture information on the employer’s identity, number of covered employees, number of tests conducted by testing category, drug test results by testing category, positive drug test results by substance, alcohol test results by category (<0.02, 0.02-0.39, ³4.0), test refusals by type of refusal and cancelled tests.

     The FTA’s current MIS reporting procedure includes a long version and an EZ version of an alcohol reporting form and a drug reporting form. By converting to the proposed DOT MIS one-page form, transit employers will no longer be required to report the number of people denied employment due to a positive test result, number of employees and supervisors trained, number of accidents with a positive drug or alcohol test result, number of fatalities with a positive drug or alcohol test result, number of persons testing positive for both drugs and alcohol, actions taken for other alcohol rule violations, number of persons returned-to-duty following a positive drug or alcohol test result, and funding source information.

     At the conclusion of the comment period ending November 14, 2002, eleven comments were received; nine in favor and two opposing the one DOT MIS form. Given the support for the one DOT MIS form, the rule is expected to be made final with minor modifications. However, the switch will not go into effect until the 2003-reporting year. Therefore, the same MIS Reporting forms, selection process and Internet reporting processes implemented last year will be in effect for the 2002 reporting year.

2002 MIS Reporting Process Unchanged

     The new one-page DOT MIS form will not go into effect until the 2003-reporting year. Consequently, all covered employers are still required to complete an annual MIS report using forms published as Appendix A of Part 655 for the 2002-reporting year. Only those employers who are randomly selected, however, are required to submit the report to FTA. The employers will be selected using a stratified sampling procedure that chooses from all transit agencies that receive FTA funding.

     Each of the selected employers will be sent a notification and reporting package shortly after the first of the year. The selected employers may submit their reports using the forms included in their notification package. Responses should be sent to the FTA Drug and Alcohol MIS Project Office, USDOT/Volpe Center, DTS-781, 55 Broadway Kendall Square, Cambridge, MA 02142-1093. Selected employers also have the option to submit their responses on the Internet. Corresponding procedures for internet reporting will be provided in the notification package. The reports must be submitted to FTA no later than March 15, 2003. Questions may be directed to the FTA Drug and Alcohol MIS hotline at (617) 494-6336.


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