Complementary Paratransit FixedRoute
Effective Immediately: CATS policy regarding Caretaker "No-Shows" is no longer in effect. Please refer to the newly updated.
All forms and documents are available in alternate formats (i.e.CD, Braille, Large Print, Audiotapes, or Email ) by calling 770.345.6238
Paratransit Service Overview
Cherokee Area Transportation System (CATS) is a public, mass transportation program. Paratransit, as a part of CATS, is neither a personal taxi nor a social services agency. The DOT ADA regulations at 49 CFR section 37.121(a) state:
…each public entity operating a fixed route system shall provide paratransit or other special services to individuals with disabilities that are comparable to the level of service provided to individuals without disabilities who use the fixed-route system.
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a civil rights statute. It clearly emphasized nondiscriminatory access to fixed-route service, with ADA Complementary Paratransit acting as a “safety net” for people who do not have the functional ability to use the fixed-route system. Under the ADA, Complementary Paratransit service is not intended to be a comprehensive system of transportation for individuals with disabilities, and simply having a disability or multiple disabilities does not, in and of itself, entitle a person to ride.
Rather, the DOT ADA regulations provide for three categories of ADA Complementary Paratransit eligibility.
• Persons who are unable to board, ride or disembark from a fixed-route bus, regardless of their ability to get to the bus stop or availability of accessible vehicles.
• Persons with specific impairments who cannot travel to a bus stop or board the fixed-route bus, or travel to their final destination after disembarking from the fixed-route bus.
• Any individual with a disability who has a specific impairment-related condition, which prevents such individual from traveling to a boarding location or from a disembarking location on such system.
The determining factor in deciding whether the passenger qualifies for ADA Complementary Paratransit is whether the passenger can functionally ride or access the bus. It is not a medical determination; it is a functional ability analysis. Eligibility is good for three (3) years, unless temporary eligibility is given. Temporary eligibility is based on a temporary functional need. The eligibility date will be noted in the eligibility letter.
What Areas Are Served?
CATS Paratransit service will operate 3/4-mile on either side of both Canton Fixed Transportation Routes. All passenger trips must begin and end within the CATS Paratransit area. Transfer points will be established for passengers traveling outside the service area. The CATS Paratransit service area is shown on the map included at the end of this guide.
When Does This Service Operate?
Paratransit services are provided in Cherokee County, Monday through Friday from 8 AM to 4 PM; with no service between 12 noon and 1 PM. Weekend service is not available. Service will not be available in observance of the following holidays: New Year’s Day, Martin Luther King’s Birthday, Memorial Day,
Independence Day, Labor Day, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Friday after Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and the Day after Christmas. All reservations are accepted during the same business hours of 9-5 on holidays by leaving a message with all the vital trip information for the next day.
What Is The Fare?
Current fares are; $2.50 for Paratransit eligible riders per one-way trip which is double the regular fixed-route fare. Passengers must have their Paratransit ID card available to show the driver. Fares may be paid with exact cash, credit card over the phone or 10-ride ticket upon boarding. Fares will be collected in the farebox at the front of the vehicle. Drivers cannot make change.
Tickets may be purchased at the CATS office, 884 Univeter Road, Canton, Georgia. Tickets may be paid with a personal check, debit cards, credit cards, or cash. There is a no refund policy on all purchases. Tickets should be kept in a safe place. Call CATS at (770) 345-6238 to purchase tickets.
What About Visitors With Disabilities?
Visitors to Cherokee County, who are functionally disabled, will be given “presumptive eligibility” and can ride for up to 21 days each year without being certified by CATS. The fare structure is still $1.25 per passenger. Visitors must supply documentation of their place of residence, and if it is not apparent, of their disability.
CATS ADA eligibility card will be recognized throughout the country and passengers may use it to ride paratransit service whenever it is applicable and available. Check with the transit system for the exact rules and regulations for scheduling a trip.
Any article left on a vehicle will be turned into the CATS lost and found a department at the CATS office. Articles will be held for 30 days. To claim a lost article, call the CATS office at (770) 345-6238. Passengers must come to CATS to recover lost items.
Inclement Weather Policy
In the event of hazardous weather or potentially hazardous weather such as snow, ice or flooding or in the case of emergency situations, CATS will cancel paratransit service. CATS paratransit will not transport in unsafe conditions. CATS paramount concern is the safety of its riders and employees. While every effort will be made to operate vehicles according to confirmed schedules, recognized weather conditions or treacherous surfaces may cause the operation of vehicles to be unsafe and, therefore, temporarily terminated.
If Cherokee County schools are closed due to inclement weather, CATS will not transport passengers. Regular service will resume once all roads are clear and safe for travel.
Persons with temporary disabilities may obtain a CobbLinc Paratransit Photo ID that is valid for the expected time of the disability. For more information, visit the "How to Apply" section of this webpage.
CATS provides travel training for seniors, disabled communities, and Cherokee County School District's "Transition Academies." Travel training is conducted by our Mobility Coordinator.
Groups and individuals can request a travel training session by calling (770) 345-6238.
The CATS Paratransit Services Rider's Guide contains useful information for paratransit passengers.
This document is available in alternate formats (i.e., electronic, audio CD, or large print) upon request.
If you have questions about any of the information contained in this guide and/or need to request the guide in an alternate format, contact the Transit Operations Specialist at (770) 528-3690, TDD 711.