Article - Transportation
(a) (1) In this subtitle the following words have the meanings indicated.
(2) “Certified nurse practitioner” means an individual who is licensed by the State Board of Nursing to practice registered nursing as described in § 8–101 of the Health Occupations Article and who is certified as a nurse practitioner by the State Board of Nursing.
(3) “Licensed chiropractor” means a chiropractor who is licensed by the State Board of Chiropractic Examiners to practice chiropractic or chiropractic with the right to practice physical therapy as described in § 3–301 of the Health Occupations Article.
(4) “Licensed optometrist” means an optometrist who is licensed by the State Board of Examiners in Optometry to practice optometry as described in § 11–101 of the Health Occupations Article.
(5) “Licensed physical therapist” means a physical therapist who is licensed by the State Board of Physical Therapy Examiners to practice physical therapy as described in § 13–101 of the Health Occupations Article.
(6) “Licensed physician” means a physician, including a doctor of osteopathy, who is licensed by the State Board of Physicians to practice medicine as described in § 14–101 of the Health Occupations Article.
(7) “Licensed physician assistant” means an individual who is licensed under Title 15 of the Health Occupations Article to practice medicine with physician supervision.
(8) “Licensed podiatrist” means a podiatrist who is licensed by the State Board of Podiatric Medical Examiners to practice podiatry as described in § 16–101 of the Health Occupations Article.
(b) (1) The owner of any vehicle described in paragraph (3) of this subsection may apply to the Administration for the assignment to that vehicle of a special disability registration number and special disability registration plates, if a certified nurse practitioner, licensed physician, licensed physician assistant, licensed chiropractor, licensed optometrist, licensed podiatrist, or licensed physical therapist certifies, in accordance with paragraph (2) of this subsection, that the applicant:
(i) Has lung disease to such an extent that forced (respiratory) expiratory volume for one second when measured by spirometry is less than one liter, or arterial oxygen tension (PO2) is less than 60 mm/hg on room air at rest;
(ii) Has cardiovascular disease limitations classified in severity as Class III or Class IV according to standards accepted by the American Heart Association;
(iii) Is unable to walk 200 feet without stopping to rest;
(iv) Is unable to walk without the use of, or assistance from, a brace, cane, crutch, another person, prosthetic device, or other assistive device;
(v) Requires a wheelchair for mobility;
(vi) Has lost a foot, leg, hand, or arm;
(vii) Has lost the use of a foot, leg, hand, or arm;
(viii) Has a permanent impairment of both eyes so that:
1. The central visual acuity is 20/200 or less in the better eye, with corrective glasses; or
2. There is a field defect in which the peripheral field has contracted to such an extent that the widest diameter of visual field subtends an angular distance no greater than 20 degrees in the better eye; or
(ix) Has a permanent disability that adversely impacts the ambulatory ability of the applicant and which is so severe that the person would endure a hardship or be subject to a risk of injury if the privileges accorded a person for whom a vehicle is specially registered under this section were denied.
(2) For the purposes of this section, the qualifying disabilities specified in paragraph (1) of this subsection shall be certified as follows:
(i) A licensed physician, licensed physician assistant, or certified nurse practitioner may certify conditions specified in paragraph (1)(i) through (ix) of this subsection;
(ii) A licensed chiropractor, licensed podiatrist, or licensed physical therapist may certify conditions specified in paragraph (1)(iii) through (vii) and (ix) of this subsection;
(iii) A licensed optometrist may certify the condition specified in paragraph (1)(viii) of this subsection; and
(iv) Notwithstanding any provision of paragraph (1) of this subsection, the applicant may self–certify conditions specified in paragraph (1)(vi) of this subsection by appearing in person with proper identification at a full–service Motor Vehicle Administration office during normal business hours.
(3) This section applies only to:
(i) A Class A (passenger) vehicle;
(ii) A Class D (motorcycle) vehicle;
(iii) A Class M (multipurpose) vehicle;
(iv) A Class E (truck) vehicle with a one ton or less manufacturer’s rated capacity; or
(v) A Class H, I, or J vehicle that is specially equipped for the transportation of individuals with disabilities and is used exclusively for the transportation of individuals with disabilities.
(4) (i) Notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph (1) of this subsection, a nursing home, health care facility, adult day care facility, retirement home, or other facility that regularly provides transportation for individuals with disabilities may apply to the Administration for special disability registration for vehicles owned by the facility.
(ii) An application for special disability registration under this paragraph shall contain:
1. The certification of the owner or operator of the facility that the vehicle for which the registration is sought is used exclusively for the transportation of individuals with disabilities as described in paragraph (1) of this subsection; and
2. Any other information or documentation concerning the facility or the vehicle that the Administration requires.
(c) (1) Except as otherwise provided in subsection (b)(4) of this section, special registration and special registration plates may be issued under this section only if the applicant submits proof satisfactory to the Administration that the applicant is an individual with a disability described in subsection (b)(1) of this section.
(2) Except as provided by paragraph (3) of this subsection and subsection (b)(4) of this section, the Administration may not accept applications for special registration under this section from an applicant who, at the time of application:
(i) Possesses one valid special registration issued under this section; or
(ii) Possesses two parking placards issued under § 13–616.1 of this subtitle.
(3) An individual may possess two valid special registrations for Class D motorcycles in addition to the special registration authorized under subsection (b) of this section and the parking placards authorized under § 13–616.1 of this subtitle.
(d) Except as provided under §§ 13–951 and 13–952 of this title, no fee in addition to the annual registration fee otherwise required by this title is required for special registration under this section.
(e) A special registration number assigned under this section shall:
(1) Consist of the letters, numerals, or both that the Administration specifies; and
(2) Be displayed on special registration plates issued for the vehicle, together with the International Symbol of Access.
(f) (1) In this subsection, “special types of vehicles” means:
(i) Emergency vehicles defined under § 11–118 of this article;
(ii) Service vehicles defined under § 22–201 of this article;
(iii) Class B (for hire) vehicles;
(iv) Class C (funeral and ambulance) vehicles;
(v) Class H (school) vehicles;
(vi) Class I (charter bus) vehicles;
(vii) Class J (vanpool) vehicles;
(viii) Class P (passenger bus) vehicles;
(ix) Class Q (limousine) vehicles; and
(x) State or local government vehicles.
(2) The person for whom special registration plates are issued under this section or under a similar provision of any other state or country:
(i) 1. Except as provided in items (ii) and (iii) of this paragraph, may park for unlimited periods in parking zones restricted as to the length of parking time permitted; and
2. Is not required to pay any parking meter fees of this State or of any political subdivision of this State where parking meters do not meet the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act;
(ii) May park in a parking space equipped with a parking meter only for:
1. Except as provided in item 2 of this item, twice the maximum time period permitted on the parking meter but not to exceed a maximum of 4 hours; and
2. If the parking meter permits parking for more than 4 hours, the period permitted on the parking meter; and
(iii) Subject to the posted time restriction specified for the parking zone, may park in a designated zone for the handicapped established:
1. At any State–owned airport; or
2. By Baltimore County on any county highway.
(3) The provisions of this subsection supersede any local ordinance, except that they do not apply:
(i) To zones where stopping, standing, or parking is prohibited to all vehicles;
(ii) To zones that are reserved for special types of vehicles;
(iii) Where there is a local ordinance that prohibits parking during heavy traffic periods in morning, afternoon, or evening rush hours, or where parking clearly would present a traffic hazard; or
(iv) In Baltimore City, where there is a local ordinance that restricts parking for vehicles that do not display a specified residential parking permit.
(g) When using the parking privileges granted under this section:
(1) The person shall have in the person’s possession identification issued by the Administration as proof that parking privileges are being utilized by a person with a disability as defined in subsection (b)(1) of this section; and
(2) The person shall make the identification available upon the request of:
(i) A police officer, while the officer is discharging the official duties of a police officer; or
(ii) Any other person authorized by a political subdivision to enforce this section, while acting within the scope of this authority.
(h) A person may not commit any fraud or make any misrepresentation in applying for disability registration plates, using special disability registration plates, or certifying an individual with a disability as defined in subsection (b)(1) of this section for special disability registration under this section.
(i) A person who operates a motor vehicle with a special disability registration number or special disability registration plates may not use the privileges granted under this section, unless the person:
(1) Is a person with a disability who meets the requirements of subsection (b)(1) of this section; or
(2) Is accompanied by a dependent, or an individual who depends on the person for transportation, who meets the requirements of subsection (b)(1) of this section.
(j) To determine if the eligibility requirements continue to be met, the Administration may conduct a review of a registration that is issued by the Administration under this subsection and:
(1) If the Administration finds it necessary to review the severity or permanency of a registration holder’s disability, the Administration may request a review and recommendations from the Medical Advisory Board established under § 16–118 of this article; and
(2) If the Administration determines that eligibility requirements are not being met, the Administration may revoke the registration.
(k) The Administration shall administer the special registration plates program in accordance with the provisions of this section.
(l) In accordance with the provisions of this section, each board for licensed physicians, licensed physician assistants, licensed chiropractors, licensed optometrists, licensed podiatrists, or licensed physical therapists shall be responsible for the development and maintenance of a database system with which the Administration can interface and verify licensure.