As used in ss. 341.011-341.061, the term:
(1) “Public transit provider” or “provider” means a public agency providing public transit service, including rail authorities created in chapter 343.
(2) “Fixed-guideway transportation system” means a public transit system for the transporting of people by a conveyance, or a series of interconnected conveyances, which conveyance or series of conveyances is specifically designed for travel on a stationary rail or other guideway, whether located on, above, or under the ground.
(3) “Eligible transit operating costs” means the total administrative, management, and operation costs directly incident to the provision of public transit services, excluding any depreciation or amortization of capital assets.
(4) “Local revenue sources” means the sum of funds received from a local government entity to assist in paying transit operation costs, including tax funds, and revenue earned from fare box receipts, charter service, contract service, express service, and nontransportation activities.
(5) “Paratransit” means those elements of public transit which provide service between specific origins and destinations selected by the individual user with such service being provided at a time that is agreed upon by the user and the provider of the service. Paratransit service is provided by taxis, limousines, “dial-a-ride” buses, and other demand-responsive operations that are characterized by their nonscheduled, nonfixed route nature.
(6) “Public transit” means the transporting of people by conveyances, or systems of conveyances, traveling on land or water, local or regional in nature, and available for use by the public. Public transit systems may be either governmentally owned or privately owned. Public transit specifically includes those forms of transportation commonly known as “paratransit.”
(7) “Public transit capital project” means a project undertaken by a public agency to provide public transit to its constituency, and is limited to acquisition, design, construction, reconstruction, or improvement of a governmentally owned or operated transit system.
(8) “Public transit service development project” means a project undertaken by a public agency to determine whether a new or innovative technique or measure can be utilized to improve or expand public transit services to its constituency. The duration of the project shall be limited according to the type of the project in conformance with the provisions of s. 341.051(5)(e), but in no case shall exceed a period of 3 years. Public transit service development projects specifically include projects involving the utilization of new technologies, services, routes, or vehicle frequencies; the purchase of special transportation services; and other such techniques for increasing service to the riding public as are applicable to specific localities and transit user groups. (9) “Commuter assistance program” means financial and technical assistance by the department to promote alternatives to the use of automobiles by a single commuter. The term includes the following program areas:
(a) “Ridesharing,” which means an arrangement between persons with a common destination, or destinations, within the same proximity, to share the use of a motor vehicle on a recurring basis for round-trip transportation to and from their place of employment or other common destination. For purposes of ridesharing, employment shall be deemed to commence when an employee arrives at the employer’s place of employment to report for work and shall be deemed to terminate when the employee leaves the employer’s place of employment, excluding areas not under the control of the employer. However, an employee shall be deemed to be within the course of employment when the employee is engaged in the performance of duties assigned or directed by the employer, or acting in the furtherance of the business of the employer, irrespective of location.
(b) “Transportation demand management,” which means techniques that can be used to increase the efficiency of existing transportation systems by influencing demand on the systems and by reducing the number of automobile trips during peak hours of highway use.
(c) “Transportation management association,” which means an organization which helps solve transportation problems by encouraging businesses and governments to implement ridesharing and demand management strategies.
(10) “Transit corridor project” means a project that is undertaken by a public agency and designed to relieve congestion and improve capacity within an identified transportation corridor by increasing people-carrying capacity of the system through the use and facilitated movement of high-occupancy conveyances. Each transit corridor project must meet the requirements established in s. 341.051(5)(d). Initial project duration shall not exceed a period of 2 years unless the project is reauthorized by the Legislature. Such reauthorization shall be based upon a determination that the project is meeting or exceeding the criteria, developed pursuant to s. 341.051(5)(d), by which the success of the project is being judged and by inclusion of the project in a departmental appropriation request.
(11) “Intercity bus service” means regularly scheduled bus service for the general public which operates with limited stops over fixed routes connecting two or more urban areas not in close proximity; has the capacity for transporting baggage carried by passengers; makes meaningful connections with scheduled intercity bus service to more distant points, if such service is available; maintains scheduled information in the National Official Bus Guide; and provides package express service incidental to passenger transportation.
(12) “Eligible bus carrier” or “carrier” means a private company that has operated defined intercity bus service in the state, with formal authority in accordance with the rules and regulations of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the Surface Transportation Board of the Federal Department of Transportation, for a minimum of 2 years.
(13) “Eligible intercity bus costs” means the total costs directly incident to the provision of intercity bus service, including any depreciation or amortization of capital assets purchased without public financial assistance.
(14) “Intercity bus capital project” means a capital project undertaken by an intercity bus carrier to provide intercity bus service, and is limited to acquisition, design, construction, reconstruction, or improvement of a privately operated intercity bus service. Projects may include that portion of a governmentally owned or operated transit system designed to support privately operated intercity bus service.