Mobility Ohio is a multi-agency effort to improve the safety, access, and quality of Ohio’s health and human service transportation network while mitigating fraud by establishing a consistent and effective oversight structure and increasing inter-agency coordination.
The Mobility Ohio vision is to address unmet transportation needs identified by stakeholders in the Ohio Statewide Transit Needs Study, Transportation Challenges for Ohioans with Disabilities Study, and the Ohio Mobility Transformation Study.
The vision establishes administration of all health and human service transportation through a single agency across ODOT’s Human Service Transportation Coordination (HSTC) Regions.
Mobility Ohio Problems Statement
Transportation services in Ohio are operated by hundreds of public and human services agencies. Some services are open to the general public, while others serve only seniors, persons with disabilities or other specific groups. All of these services are necessary to meet the diverse transportation needs of Ohioans.
Fourteen Ohio state agencies invest over $500 million annually into providing transportation for consumers. Each agency has its own programs and policies. Lack of coordination among the agencies has led to inefficient use of resources, where there are duplicated transportation services for some riders, and no, or limited, service for others.
Where Is the Mobility Ohio Pilot
ODOT has established 10 Human Service Transportation Coordination (HSTC) regions. These regions were established based on a combination of travel movements in Ohio, Area Agency on Aging (AAA), Managed Care Organizations (MCO) Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO), and Rural Transportation Planning Organization (RTPO) boundaries. A major benefit of coordinating transportation across regions is that customers will have more access to cross-county transportation. Many transportation providers limit their services to in-county only. However, customers typically need to travel outside their counties, especially those in rural areas.
The Ohio mid-Eastern Government Association (OMEGA) HSTC region was selected as the Mobility Ohio Pilot region. This region has an established regional transportation structure that ensures everybody has a voice.
The OMEGA HSTC region includes the Counties of Belmont, Carroll, Coshocton, Guernsey, Harrison, Holmes, Jefferson, Muskingum and Tuscarawas.
Ohio's Mobility Ohio Pilot Region - OMEGA HSTC Region
Coordinating Council on Access and Mobility (CCAM)
Personal mobility is essential to the success of America’s residents, communities, and economy. Transportation enables mobility by connecting individuals to jobs, healthcare and services, and opens the door to opportunity. Despite its significance, millions of Americans lack access to reliable transportation due to disability, income, or age. Inadequate transportation constrains the mobility of these individuals and prevents them from accessing jobs, medical care, healthy food, educational programs, social services, and other community activities.
The federal government recognizes the importance of personal mobility. Agencies across the government administer 130 programs to fund transportation services for people with disabilities, older adults, and lower-income individuals. However, those transportation services can be costly and fragmented due to inconsistent program rules and a lack of interagency collaboration.
The Coordinating Council on Access and Mobility (CCAM) is an interagency partnership established in 2004 by Executive Order 13330 to coordinate the efforts of the federal agencies that fund transportation services for targeted populations. The CCAM mission and vision are as follows:
Mission: The CCAM issues policy recommendations and implements activities that improve the availability, accessibility, and efficiency of transportation for the following targeted populations: older adults, people with disabilities, and individuals of low income.
- CCAM Report to the President
- CCAM Cost-Sharing Policy Statement
- Cost Allocation Technology for Non-Emergency Medical Transportation Final Report
- CCAM Federal Fund Braiding Guide (Published June 2020)
First Initiative - Mobility Ohio Pilot Rate-setting
As a first step in implementing the Mobility Ohio vision, ODOT is leading a pilot project in the OMEGA HSTC region which includes the Counties of Belmont, Carroll, Coshocton, Guernsey, Harrison, Holmes, Jefferson, Muskingum and Tuscarawas.
A rate-setting methodology based on the fully allocated costs of providing transportation will be implemented in this region. The goal is to allow costs to be billed or allocated appropriately to the transportation user and will facilitate the more efficient use of transportation resources.
Mobility Ohio is providing a rate-setting tool to assist transportation providers in pricing service based on their fully allocated costs. The fully allocated cost includes direct and allocable indirect costs. The rate-setting tool incorporates an Excel spreadsheet program that allows transportation providers to enter expense data and easily perform calculations to generate pricing by unit of service (service hour, service mile, one-way passenger trip, or passenger-mile). ODOT has contracted with RLS & Associates to develop the tool and train providers on its use. As part of the rate-setting pilot, four local providers in the OMEGA HSTC region have already begun to use the tool.
At the Federal level, RLS is also working with the US DOT’s Council on Access and Mobility (CCAM) to create a rate-setting cost allocation model based on the experience of Ohio’s Mobility Transformation and the pilot project. This effort has put Ohio in the spotlight and given us a chance to inflence the direction of human service transportation provision nationwide.