North Arkansas
Transportation Service

North Arkansas Transportation Service (NATS) is a public transportation service under the 5311 program funded by the Federal Transit Administration.

North Arkansas Transportation services

This program is a 50/50 match grant program for operating funds and an 80/20 match grant program for capital and administrative funding. The Public Transportation Section of the Arkansas Department of Transportation administers the grant funds.

Rural Public Transportation Agencies such as NATS are operated for the general public. This means that anyone may ride a public transit vehicle. There are no restrictions such as age etc. to keep someone from riding a public transit vehicle. All passenger trips are subject to the rate or contract schedule depending on the type of trip that is scheduled.

History & Overview

North Arkansas Transportation Service began operation in March 1981 primarily as a commuter service providing low cost transportation to the work place for those employees who live in the most rural areas of the counties served.

After two years of extensive research and planning, North Arkansas Transportation Service was granted route authority for Baxter, Boone, Marion, Newton, Searcy Counties and parts of Carroll, Fulton, Izard, and Madison Counties.

NATS started primarily as a commuter service, providing low-cost transportation to the workplace for employees who live in the most rural areas served.  Service began with four small vans providing transportation in Boone County, Newton County, and parts of Carroll and Madison Counties.  By the end of the first year of operation, the fleet had grown to nine vehicles and had provided more than 2,200 passenger trips for employment purposes. Today NATS fleet of vehicles consists of sixty-five vans and small buses, two crew cab pick-up trucks, two service trucks, and one SUV.  During 2023 NATS vehicles traveled more than 635,253 miles, providing more than 91,051 passenger trips.

NATS transports Medicaid, Medicare, and public passengers for medical, shopping, personal, and other incidental purposes as may be approved by the NATS Transit Director. In addition to operating commuter routes, NATS offers advance notice Demand Response service in all counties served.  The Deviated Fixed route service is provided in both the cities of Mountain Home and Harrison Monday through Friday. City routes will not run on state holidays and can be affected by inclement weather. NATS service includes two partners in the early intervention day treatment agencies, youth organizations, and coordination with other groups. NATS hours vary according to passenger schedules.

With 42 years of experience, NATS continues to be committed to its core values which include providing safe, reliable, and accessible transportation, maintaining affordability along with continued growth, and a superior standard of courtesy and professionalism toward clients and employees.

For more information about North Arkansas Transportation Service call 870-741-8008 or email Jack Chisum, Transportation Director. 

north Arkansas transportation services bus
photo of people riding a NATS bus in Northwest Arkansas

Public Notice

Notice is hereby given that the Northwest Arkansas Economic Development District, Inc. (NWAEDD) is seeking financial assistance from the U.S. Department of Transportation. Grant funds will be used to continue operations for North Arkansas Transportation Service (NATS) in the Counties of Baxter, Boone, Carroll, Fulton, Izard, Madison, Marion, Newton, and Searcy.  NATS service is a Demand Response service. NATS service operates Monday through Friday.  NATS hours vary according to passenger schedules. NATS transports both Medicaid and General Public passengers for medical, shopping, personal, and other incidental purposes as may be approved by the NATS Director. NATS requires advance reservations prior to using this service.  Appointments may be made by calling the scheduling office at 870-741-8008. Copies of the grant proposal are available for inspection by the public at the NWAEDD Plaza 818 Highway 62-65-412 North, Harrison, Arkansas, or the NATS office at 108 Sisco Avenue, Harrison, Arkansas. Any person wishing to request a public hearing on the proposed project must submit that request in writing to the attention of Jack Chisum, NATS Director at P.O. Box 190, Harrison, Arkansas 72602-0190 prior to October 25, 2024.

Notice of Non-Discrimination

The North Arkansas Transportation Service – NATS complies with all civil rights provisions of federal statutes and related authorities that prohibited discrimination in programs and activities receiving federal financial assistance.

Therefore, the North Arkansas Transportation Service – NATS does not discriminate on the basis of race, sex, color, age, national origin, religion or disability, in the admission, access to and treatment in North Arkansas Transportation Service – NATS programs and activities, as well as the North Arkansas Transportation Service – NATS hiring or employment practices. Complaints of alleged discrimination and inquiries regarding the North Arkansas Transportation Service – NATS nondiscrimination policies may be directed to Jack Chisum, Director of Transportation, (ADA/504/Title VI Coordinator), P. O. Box 190, Harrison, AR 72602-0190, 870-741-6650, or the following email address:

This notice is available from the ADA/504/Title VI Coordinator in large print, on audiotape and in Braille.