[HISTORY: Adopted by the Mayor and Council of the Borough of Rockaway 11-14-1991 by Ord. No. 31-91. Amendments noted where applicable.]
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- The Borough of Rockaway, New Jersey.
- The Borough Clerk of the Borough of Rockaway, New Jersey.
- Includes any person who, while occupying any taxicab, drives, conducts and directs the actual mechanical operation thereof, whereby passengers are transported therein for hire.
- Includes any motor vehicle (other than a bus, taxicab or motor vehicle used in the conduct of a funeral) which is owned and used for the purpose of transporting passengers for hire and which is hired by a specific charter or for a particular contract or by the day or other fixed period and for which there is a fare or price agreed upon in advance between owner or operator and passenger.
- Includes any person who owns, directs, conducts or is in charge of the actual operations of any taxicab business or of any taxicab, either as owner, manager, driver or otherwise.
- Includes any person who holds legal title to any taxicab, any conditional vendee or lessee or any other person having an interest in said vehicle which shall entitle him to the immediate right of possession thereof.
- Includes any individual, partnership or corporation, singular or plural, unless the contrary is clearly expressed.
- PUBLIC TAXICAB STAND
- Includes a section of a public street or other public place set apart for the exclusive use of a designated number of taxicabs. Such section shall be distinctly marked by appropriate metal signs as required by motor vehicle and traffic regulations of the State of New Jersey. A "taxicab stand" may be further identified by appropriate markings and lettering upon the surface of the street or public place.
- Includes any motor vehicle, other than a bus or livery, which is operated or engaged in the business of transporting passengers for hire.
Except as hereinafter set forth, no taxicab or livery shall be driven or operated within the Borough or shall be used or engaged in the business of transporting persons for hire until the owner thereof shall have first obtained a license therefor from the Borough. The provisions of this section shall not apply to out-of-town operators who may deliver passengers in Rockaway or pass through the Borough.
No person shall drive or operate or cause to be driven or operated any taxicab or livery in the Borough until such person shall have obtained a license therefor from the Borough as hereinafter set forth.
The examination, licensing, regulation and inspection of taxicabs and liveries, the examination and licensing of applicants or owners' and drivers' licenses and the enforcement of all the provisions of this chapter shall be under the control of the Council, and said Council shall have the power to approve, deny, suspend or revoke any taxicab, livery or driver's license for cause as hereinafter provided.
All applications for licenses under this chapter shall be made, in writing, on forms to be provided by the Borough.
Any subsequent change of address of any owner or any change in the name or address of any operator or driver shall be reported by the owner, operator or driver to the Borough Clerk, in writing, within three days after such change, and the Borough Clerk shall immediately report such changes of address to the Council.
No owner of any licensed taxicab or livery shall sell, lease, rent, assign, hire, transfer or in any other manner dispose of such taxicab or livery or any taxicab or livery business without notification to the Council; and no owner of any licensed taxicab or livery shall sell, lease, rent, assign, hire, transfer or in any other manner dispose of any taxicab or livery license without first obtaining proper transfer of the license.
In the event that any licensed owner shall acquire a vehicle during any license period which is intended to be used as a substitute for one previously licensed, the owner thereof shall immediately notify the Council of the Borough of Rockaway, in writing, of such substitution and apply for a transfer of the license from the previously licensed vehicle to the one to be substituted therefor. Subject to the provisions of this chapter and the payment of the transfer fee, the Council may, in its discretion, approve the transfer of such license.
During the period subsequent to such notification and prior to the approval or disapproval by the Council of the transfer of the license to permit the operation of such substituted vehicle, the owner may operate such substituted vehicle or cause the same to be operated, subject to the other provisions of this chapter.
Nothing herein contained, however, shall be construed as authorizing any person who is not presently licensed as an owner to operate or permit the operation of any taxicab or livery owned by him, as herein defined, prior to the granting to him of an owner's license; nor does it authorize the operation by a licensed owner of any additional vehicle for which no owner's license has been granted, pending approval by the Council.
No owner of any taxicab or livery shall hire out or rent the same to any other person for use as a taxicab or livery within the Borough for a stipulated sum and for a definite period of time without the consent of the Council of the Borough.
No owner of any taxicab or livery shall permit the same to be driven as such by any person other than a person licensed to drive the same by the Borough.
No taxicab or livery license shall be approved or issued until said taxicab has been thoroughly inspected and is found to be in a clean and sanitary condition and mechanically safe for the transportation of passengers. Inspections shall be made in May and shall be made by the Rockaway Borough Police Department. The Borough Clerk shall keep a record of such inspections.
If, upon inspection, a taxicab or livery is found to be unsafe for the transportation of passengers or unclean and unsanitary, the license for the same shall be refused or, if already issued, may be revoked or suspended by the Council.
Said policy of insurance shall also be approved by the Borough Attorney. In the event of any transfer of ownership or purchase of new equipment (vehicles), it shall be the duty of the owner to effect the proper transfer of insurance coverage and furnish the same to the Borough Clerk.
For every taxicab and livery for which a license is issued by the Borough, the owner thereof shall pay to said Borough annually a fee as provided in Chapter A263, Fees.
Every license shall expire at 12:00 midnight on May 31 of the year for which the same is issued.
All fees shall be paid to and the licenses shall be issued by the Borough Clerk. In the event that any applicant for a taxicab or livery owner's license fails to qualify, the sum as provided in Chapter A263, Fees, will be returned to the applicant. The balance of said sum will be retained by the Borough as a reasonable charge for servicing and processing the application.
Whenever a taxicab license is granted, the Borough Clerk shall also issue a card containing the name of the owner, the license number of the vehicle, the year of issue and the rates of fare as herein provided. Such card shall be inserted in a card rack or frame to be provided by the owner and attached in the inside of the taxicab visible to the passenger.
Upon issuance of a livery license, the Borough Clerk shall issue to the licensee a card containing the name of the owner, the license number of the vehicle and the year of issue. Said card shall remain in the livery for which issued and shall be exhibited by the driver or owner thereof upon request.
Any license issued for any taxicab or livery may be transferred in accordance with the provisions of this chapter after approval of the Council and upon the payment to the Borough of a transfer fee as provided in Chapter A263, Fees, for each vehicle for which the license is to be transferred.
A fee as provided in Chapter A263, Fees, shall be paid for each driver's license and for each and every renewal thereof. Every driver's license shall expire at 12:00 midnight on May 31 of the year for which it is issued. Such fee as provided in Chapter A263, Fees, shall be paid to the Borough Clerk at the time the application for the license is made. In the event that any applicant for a driver's license fails to qualify, the sum as provided in Chapter A263, Fees, will be returned to the applicant. The balance of said sum will be retained by the Borough as a reasonable charge for servicing and processing the application.
Every applicant for a driver's license hereunder shall be:
A resident of the State of New Jersey at the time of making application.
The holder of a New Jersey auto driver's license.
Able to understand, read and write the English language.
In possession of a satisfactory knowledge of traffic regulations and geography of the Borough and its surroundings.
In good physical and mental condition, as well as of good character.
At least 21 years of age.
No person will be granted a driver's license hereunder who shall:
Be physically impaired in a manner to affect his ability to drive.
Be addicted to the use of drugs or intoxicating liquors.
Have a record as a habitual violator of the provisions of the New Jersey motor vehicle and traffic regulations.
Have a record of having been involved in accidents occasioned by his negligence or carelessness.
Have been convicted of operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs or intoxicating liquor or of reckless driving, unless a determination is made that such offense(s) should not be used as grounds for disqualification based upon consideration of the nature, circumstances and seriousness of such offense(s), age at the time of the offense(s), evidence of rehabilitation and other pertinent factors.
Have been convicted of a crime which relates adversely to the business for which a license is sought, which shall be determined in accordance with N.J.S.A. 2A:168A-2, based upon consideration of the following factors or any other factors:
The nature and duties of the business for which a license is sought.
The nature and seriousness of the crime.
The circumstances under which the crime occurred.
The date of the crime.
The age of the person when the crime was committed.
Whether the crime was an isolated or repeated incident.
Social conditions which may have contributed to the crime.
Any evidence of rehabilitation, including good conduct in prison or in the community, counseling or psychiatric treatment received, acquisition of additional academic or vocational schooling, successful participation in correctional work-release programs or the recommendation of persons who have or have had the applicant under their supervision.
Every applicant for a taxicab driver's license shall furnish with his application three copies of a photograph of himself, of a size two inches by two inches, taken within six months of the date of such application.
Every applicant for a taxicab driver's license shall also furnish with his application a certificate of a reputable physician certifying that said physician has examined the applicant within the thirty-day period preceding the date of said application and that said applicant is of sound physique, has good eyesight and is not subject to epilepsy, vertigo, heart ailment or any other infirmity of the body.
Said applicant shall further present proof that, within the thirty-day period preceding the date of said application, he has undergone and satisfactorily passed a test indicating that his faculties of perception are unimpaired and of a degree sufficient to permit him to properly operate a taxicab without endangering persons or property by reason of lack of perceptive ability or impairment thereof.
Every licensed taxicab driver who has complied with the provisions of this section and who renews his taxicab driver's license annually thereafter shall not be required to again furnish a certificate of fitness until he presents his third successive annual application for renewal of such license, when he shall again present with his application a certificate indicating his fitness to operate a taxicab as hereinabove required; provided, however, that every person of the age of 65 years or older shall, when applying for a taxicab driver's license or renewal of any such license, annually present proof of his fitness, as hereinabove set forth, with his application for such license or renewal.
Every application for a driver's license, together with the other materials and information required to be furnished in connection therewith under the provisions of this chapter, shall be presented by the Borough Clerk to the Council of the Borough of Rockaway. The Council shall then consider said application, together with the information submitted therewith, and shall approve or disapprove the granting of the license. The Council shall notify the Borough Clerk of its action, and the same shall be entered in the minutes of the Borough Council.
Upon satisfactory fulfillment of the requirements herein set forth and approval by the Council, the Borough Clerk shall issue a driver's license to the applicant.
While engaged as a taxicab driver, such licensee shall insert said identification card in a card rack or frame, to be provided by the owner of the taxicab which is being driven and attached on the inside of the vehicle in a place readily visible to the passengers. Said rack or frame shall be of a type which will not conceal any of the information set forth on the driver's identification card. The driver shall be responsible for transferring his identification card to the taxicab being operated by him at the time.
While engaged as a livery driver, such licensee shall have his identification card in his possession and shall exhibit the same upon request.
The Council may suspend or revoke said driver's license as determined under the circumstances to be appropriate in the interest of the public safety and welfare if at any time after the issuance of any driver's license hereunder the holder thereof is convicted of:
A crime or offense which relates adversely to the business for which the license is held, as determined, in writing, according to consideration of the factors specified in § 227-19F.
Operating any motor vehicle while under the influence of any drug or intoxicant.
Habitual violations of the provisions of the New Jersey motor vehicle and traffic laws or the parking and traffic regulations of the Borough of Rockaway.
Violating any of the provisions of this chapter.
Using or permitting the use of any taxicab driven by him or her for any illegal or immoral purpose.
If the Chief of Police shall approve a driver's license and all other requirements of this chapter relating to the application for a driver's license have been complied with, including the payment of the license fee, the Borough Clerk may issue to an applicant a temporary permit to enable said applicant to drive a taxicab until the Council shall have considered said application and either granted or rejected the same. Such temporary permit shall immediately expire after consideration of said application by the Council and the approval or rejection of the same.
The license of any owner of a taxicab may also be suspended or revoked if said owner permits the use of the same for any illegal or immoral purpose or for violation of any provisions of this chapter.
The Council is hereby authorized to designate by ordinance, as provided in the motor vehicle and traffic regulations of the State of New Jersey, public taxicab stands at such places as, in its judgment, public convenience may from time to time require; and such public taxicab stands shall be designated in the manner required by law. A metal sign or signs shall also be attached to a stanchion or stanchions at the curb or displayed at some other conspicuous place adjacent to every such taxicab stand, setting forth the number of taxicabs which are permitted to occupy such stand. Not more than the number of taxicabs set forth on the metal sign may remain at the stand while awaiting employment. Taxicab stands may further be designated by appropriate markings on the street pavement.
No taxicab driver shall be permitted to solicit patronage on any of the streets or public places in the Borough, except at the designated stands or locations created by ordinance.
No taxicab, while waiting for employment by passengers, shall stand on any public street or space other than at or upon a taxicab stand designated or established in accordance with this chapter; nor shall any driver of such taxicab seek employment by repeatedly or persistently driving a taxicab to and fro in a short space before or by otherwise interfering with the proper and orderly access to and egress from any public building or other place of public gathering.
No owner or driver of any taxicab or livery shall use indecent or profane language, indulge in any loud, offensive or boisterous talk or shouting, engage in any disorderly conduct or vex or annoy passengers or citizens. In addition to any other penalty herein set forth, the Council may suspend or revoke the license of any driver or owner who shall, in its opinion, be guilty of such conduct.
No owner or driver of any taxicab or livery licensed hereunder shall induce any person to employ him or his vehicle by knowingly misinforming or misleading any person, nor shall any driver convey any passenger to any place or by any route other than the most direct route unless otherwise directed by said passenger.
The driver of any taxicab or livery shall, immediately after the termination of any hiring or employment, carefully search his taxicab for any property lost or abandoned therein. Such property, unless sooner claimed by or delivered to the owner, must be delivered to the Chief of Police for safekeeping within 24 hours after the finding thereof.
A schedule of taxicab fares must be filed with the Borough and posted in the section of the vehicle used for passengers and in such a position as to be easily read. Letters and numerals at least 3/8 inch high shall be used in posting this schedule. No change shall be made in excess of that filed with the Borough and posted in the vehicle.