Sec. 123.00Establishment; purpose.
Sec. 123.10Membership of commission.
Sec. 123.30Jurisdiction, powers and duties.
There shall be a Westchester County Taxi and Limousine Commission, the purposes of which shall be the continuance, further development and improvement of taxi and limousine service in the County of Westchester. It shall be the further purpose of the commission, consonant with the promotion and protection of the public comfort and convenience to adopt and establish an overall county-wide intermunicipal public transportation policy governing taxi and limousine services as it relates to the overall public transportation network of the county, to reserve the right to establish certain rates, standards of service, standards of insurance and minimum coverage, standards for driver safety, standards for equipment safety and design and standards for noise and air pollution control; and to set standards and criteria for the licensing of vehicles, drivers and chauffeurs, owners and operators engaged in such services; all as more particularly set forth herein.
The commission shall consist of 11 members to be appointed by the County Executive subject to the approval of the County Board of Legislators; six of said members shall be recommended for appointment by the County Board of Legislators.
Such members shall be appointed for terms of seven years. The members shall first be appointed to serve as follows:
|Members recommended by the County Board of Legislators shall initially serve as follows:|
Three members to serve for three years;
Two members to serve for five years;
One member to serve for seven years.
|Members recommended by the County Executive shall initially serve as follows:|
One member to serve for three years;
Two members to serve for five years;
Two members to serve for seven years.
|Each such other member shall serve until the appointment and qualification of a successor. For the purpose of fixing the expiration of terms, said members shall be deemed to have commenced on the first day of January in the year of appointment and qualification, irrespective of the actual date of appointment and qualification. Vacancies other than by expiration of term shall be filled for the unexpired term. The County Executive may remove any such member for cause upon stated charges. Notwithstanding the provisions of this paragraph, any public officer appointed to the commission shall serve only during the period that he or she holds such public office and shall receive no additional compensation.|
The County Executive shall designate one member of the commission to act as the chairman and chief executive officer. The first chairman and chief executive officer will serve for a term of five years. Subsequent chairmen and chief executive officers will serve for a term of seven years. The chairman shall have charge of the organization of its office and have authority to employ, assign and superintend the duties of such officers and employees as may be necessary to carry out the provisions of this chapter. The chairman shall devote his full time to this position and as such he or she shall receive compensation.
The other members of the commission shall not be entitled to compensation but shall be entitled to reimbursement for reasonable and necessary expenses incurred in the performance of his or her duties as a member.
A majority of the whole number of members of the commission then in office shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of any business. The commission shall have power to act by a majority of its members.
All proceedings of the commission and all documents and records in its possession shall be public records, and the commission shall make an annual report to the County Board of Legislators on or before the second Monday of January in each year. The Chairman of the Committee of the County Board of Legislators charged with community affairs may at any time direct the commission or the Chairman of the Commission to appear before the committee to give testimony pertaining thereto and to furnish to the members of the County Board of Legislators any reports deemed necessary.
The jurisdiction, powers and duties of the commission shall be established within six months of the effective date of this chapter and shall include the regulation and supervision of the business and industry of transportation of persons by licensed vehicles for hire in the county, pursuant to the provisions of this chapter.
Such regulation and supervision may extend to:
The regulation and supervision of rates of fare to be charged and collected.
The regulation and supervision of standards and conditions of service.
The revocation and suspension of licenses for vehicles, other than licenses issued pursuant to state law; provided, however, that taxicab licenses represented by medallions heretofore issued shall in all respects remain valid in accordance with their terms and transferable according to law.
Taxicab licenses represented by medallions which have heretofore been surrendered are hereby revoked. Additional taxicab licenses may be issued from time to time only upon the enactment of a local law providing therefor. Any nontransferable licenses shall be deemed revoked upon the surrender by or death of the holder thereof.
The issuance, revocation, suspension of licenses for drivers, chauffeurs, owners or operators of vehicles, other than licenses issued pursuant to state law, and for taxicab brokers and the establishment of qualifying standards required for such licenses.
Requirements of standards of safety and design, comfort, convenience, noise and air pollution control and efficiency in the operation of vehicles and auxiliary equipment.
Requirements for the maintenance of financial responsibility, insurance and minimum coverage.
The establishment of, and the requirement of adherence to, uniform system of accounts, with the right of the commission to inspect books and records and to require the submission of such reports as the commission may determine.
The development and effectuation of a broad public policy of transportation affected by this chapter as it relates to forms of public transportation in the county, including innovation and experimentation in relation to type and design of equipment, modes of service and manner of operation, which for limited purposes and limited periods of time may depart from the requirements otherwise established for licensed vehicles pursuant to this chapter.
Assistance to the business and industry of public transportation affected by this chapter in aid of the continuation, development and improvement of service and the safety and convenience of the public, including assistance in securing federal and state grants.
The formulation, promulgation and effectuation of rules and regulations reasonably designed to carry out the purposes, terms and provisions of this chapter.
The commission or an administrative tribunal which may be established by the commission to adjudicate charges of violation of provisions of the administrative code and rules and regulations promulgated thereunder shall have the power to enforce its decisions and orders imposing civil penalties, not to exceed $10,000.00 for each respondent, for violations relating to unlicensed vehicles for hire and unlicensed drivers of vehicles for hire as if they were money judgments, without court proceedings, in the following manner: Any such decision or order of the commission or administrative tribunal imposing a civil penalty, whether the adjudication was had by hearing or upon default or otherwise, shall constitute a judgment rendered by the commission or a administrative tribunal which may be entered in the County Court of the County of Westchester or any other place provided for the entry of civil judgments within the state. Before a judgment based upon a default may be so entered the commission or administrative tribunal shall have first notified the respondent by first class mail in such form as the commission may direct of the default and order and the penalty imposed; that a judgment will be entered in the County Court of the County of Westchester or any other place provided by law for the entry of civil judgments within the State of New York; and that entry of such judgment may be avoided by requesting a stay of default for good cause shown and either requesting a hearing or entering a plea pursuant to the rules of the commission or administrative tribunal within 30 days of the mailing of such notice. The commission or tribunal shall not enter any decision or order pursuant to this subsection unless the notice of violation shall have been served in the same manner as is prescribed for service of process by Article 3 of the Civil Practice Law and Rules or Article 3 of the Business Corporation Law; except that, with respect to any notice of violation which alleges the operation of an unlicensed vehicle for hire, the operator of such vehicle who is not the owner thereof but who uses or operates such vehicle with the permission of the owner, express or implied, shall be deemed to be the agent of such owner to receive such notice of violation, and service made pursuant to this subdivision on such operator shall also be deemed to be lawful service upon such owner.
The commission reserves the right to establish the maximum amounts to be charged and collected for the hire of a taxicab for one or more passengers for intermunicipal service within the County of Westchester.
Hereafter, the commission may prescribe, revise and otherwise regulate reasonable rates of fare which may be charged and collected for each type of service rendered.
In determining the maximum rates of fare, the commission may consider all facts which in its judgment have a bearing on a proper determination, with due regard among other things to the time and distance of travel, to the character of the service provided, to the gross revenues derived from operation, to the net return derived from operation, to the expenses of operation including the income of drivers or operators, to the return upon capital actually expended and the necessity of making reservations out of income for surplus and contingencies, to the number of passengers transported, to the effect of fares upon the public and in relation to the fares for other forms of public transportation, and to the fares and practices with respect to similar services in other cities of the United States.
No determination by the commission changing the maximum rates of fare shall be made except after a public hearing before the commission, at which evidence shall be taken.
At any public hearing involving a change in the maximum rates of fare, the burden of proof to show that existing rates are not reasonable shall be upon such segment of the business or industry affected by this chapter as is involved in the change in rates.
The costs reasonably attributable to a public hearing involving a change in the rates of fare, including the expenses of the commission and the compensation of its officers, agents and employees, shall be charged to and paid by such segment of the business of industry affected by this chapter as is involved in the change in rates.