[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of the City of Fond du Lac 9-25-2019 by Ord. No. 3698. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Editor's Note: This ordinance also repealed former Ch. 587, Taxicabs, adopted 6-23-1993 by Ord. No. 2679, as amended.
The purpose of this chapter is to:
Protect consumers by providing for safe, convenient and efficient public transportation for hire.
Protect the health and safety of drivers of public passenger vehicles.
Eliminate conflict and confusion among different types of service.
Improve operating conditions to enable licensees and drivers to provide better public service.
The following terms have the meanings indicated:
- The individual applying for a license under this section or any person who is an officer of a corporation that is applying for a license under this section.
- DEMAND-RESPONSIVE TRANSPORTATION
- Transportation by any public passenger vehicle available for call or hail and not operated on a fixed route along a public way.
- A natural person, firm, partnership, corporation, association, company or any other group of individuals acting together for a common purpose; and together with associated pronouns, shall include the male or female gender, singular or plural, as the context in which they are used requires.
- PUBLIC PASSENGER VEHICLE
- Any vehicle held for public to carry passengers to designations taking any tip, donation or gratuity for the service, regardless of whether an actual quoted fare is paid and without following any fixed routes. A public vehicle may include, but is not limited to, taxicabs, limousines, horse and horse-drawn carriages, pedicabs, pedal-cabs, quadricycle (§ 400-16), shuttles, bar and party busses, motorcycles used for tours, and human service vehicles, or any self-propelled or motor driven vehicle as defined by Wis. Stat. § 194.01(7), but does not include any of the following:
- A. Vehicles operated primarily as funeral cars;
- B. Vehicles operated by city, state or federal governments;
- C. Specialized transportation vehicles that provide transportation exclusively for elderly or low-income persons or persons with disabilities, when such transportation is provided by volunteers or by agents or employees of bona fide nonprofit agencies, and transportation provided by ambulance;
- D. Vehicles operated primarily for transporting property;
- E. Commercial motor vehicles;
- F. Courtesy rides provided to customers by auto dealerships or auto repair businesses;
- G. Vehicles rented by livery men for private use only;
- H. Motor vehicles hired by special contract.
- PUBLIC VEHICLE BUSINESS
- Any enterprise that owns a public vehicle or manages the operation of a public vehicle.
- PUBLIC VEHICLE OPERATOR
- Any person who operates a vehicle or vehicles which transport passengers for hire or compensation, except vehicles operated solely as those exempted under the definition of public vehicle.
- SPECIALIZED TRANSPORTATION SERVICE
- Especially suited for the transportation of elderly persons or persons with disabilities.
- TRANSPORTATION NETWORK COMPANY OR TNC
- Any company or organization vehicles regulated under § 440.40, Wis. Stats. that provides transportation services using on an online-enabled platform to connect passengers with drivers using their personal vehicles.
Except for a transportation network company or TNC, no person shall hire out, keep or use for hire or cause to be kept for hire any public transportation vehicle for the transportation of passengers in the City without first obtaining a license in accordance with the terms and provisions of this chapter. Each license issued shall expire on June 30 following the issuance of the license and shall entitle the licensee named to operate the vehicle described within the City.
Application for license shall be made as provided by § 433-2 of this Code and shall, among other things, state the name and address of the applicant, the number of vehicles to be licensed, a description of each vehicle by factory number, maker's name, number of adult persons the vehicle is designed to carry, the state license plate number under which the same is operated, the name of the insurance carrier, the name of the insured, and the number, amount and duration of the policy. On filing the application, together with a receipt of the City Treasurer showing payment of the license fee, the City Clerk shall, upon approval by the Fond du Lac Chief of Police or his/her designee, issue to the applicant a license for the operation of the vehicle, and before the operation of the vehicle as a public transportation vehicle within the City, the owner shall cause his name and the number of the license granted by the City to be plainly marked on the right and left side of the vehicle in figures not less than one and one-half-inch in length, and the figures shall be of light color on dark background or dark color on light background. Every such vehicle when driven or used at night shall have fixed upon some conspicuous place on the outside two lighted lamps with plain glass front with the number of the license plainly painted thereon in figures not less than one and one-half-inch in length. If the owner operates more than one vehicle, he shall also place like size and color individual numbers for each car beginning with number one and counting until the total number of his cars are so marked. The numbers and the City license number shall be separated by a hyphen or dash.
No person shall operate a public passenger vehicle for the conveyance of passengers for hire or permit the same to be operated under this chapter until and unless the applicant for a license deposits with the City Clerk a policy or certificate of liability insurance covering all public passenger vehicles used for hire for which a license is sought. The policy or certificate of liability insurance shall be issued by a company authorized to do business in Wisconsin, and minimum insurance required for a public passenger vehicle operating under this chapter shall be the minimum required for a policy or bond under § 344.15(1), Wis. Stats. Each insurance policy shall contain a provision that it may not be cancelled before the expiration of its term except upon 30 days' written notice to the City Clerk.
No public passenger vehicle shall be licensed under this chapter unless it is clean and sanitary and in good mechanical condition and suitable for safe use at all times while being used as a passenger for hire vehicle. All licensed vehicles shall be kept in such condition, and the license may be revoked for failure to maintain any vehicle as required by this section.
The Chief of Police or his/her designee may at any time for cause revoke any license granted under this chapter; provided, however, that notice of hearing upon revocation shall be given to the licensee at least five days before the hearing. Upon revocation of a license, the same shall be null and void.
No person required to be licensed under this chapter shall permit any person to operate any licensed vehicle while such vehicle is being used for the transportation of persons for hire unless the person operating the vehicle is a licensed public passenger vehicle driver as required by § 587-3.
License required. No person shall operate or drive a vehicle required to be licensed under this chapter while such vehicle is being used for the transportation of persons for hire unless the driver is licensed as provided for in this section.
Application. Application for a public passenger vehicle driver's license shall be made in the manner provided by § 433-2 of this Code, and the application shall state, among other things, the age of the applicant and that the applicant is of good physical condition, free from any infirmity which may be likely to interfere with the proper operation of the automobile by the applicant. Where it appears that the applicant has had less than six months' experience in the operation of a public passenger vehicle, the applicant's ability and skill in handling a vehicle may be examined by the Chief of Police or by an officer under his command, in which case a report shall be made as soon as possible after such examination.
License period. The license shall be valid for a period of two years and shall expire on June 30 of the appropriate year.
In addition to the suspension or revocation of any license issued under this chapter, and except where otherwise specifically provided, any person found to be in violation of any provisions of this chapter or any order, rule or regulation made hereunder shall be subject to a penalty as provided in § 1-4 of this Code.