Chapter 5.18
COMMERCIAL TOUR PERMITS

Sections:

5.18.010    Intent.

5.18.015    Permit required.

5.18.020    Number of permits available.

5.18.025    Fee designation.

5.18.030    Application process.

5.18.040    Public hearing for commercial tours required.

5.18.050    Issuance of permit.

5.18.060    Renewal.

5.18.065    Reporting.

5.18.070    Permit revocation, suspension or reduction in skier day allocation.

5.18.075    Appeal from decision of manager.

5.18.080    Reserved.

5.18.010 Intent.

In accordance with the purposes of this title, it is the intent of this chapter that the borough regulate commercial tours. (Ord. 18-09-512 § 25)

5.18.015 Permit required.

A. No person shall operate a commercial tour in the Haines Borough except as authorized by a duly issued and currently valid tour permit obtained pursuant to this chapter for each commercial tour offered.

B. Multiple tour activities by a single operator having different impacts on the Haines Borough may require a separate commercial tour permit.

C. Permits shall be issued biennially and the permit year shall be from May 1st through April 30th except that permits issued under Chapter 5.24 HBC shall be valid between February 1st and May 3rd. Proof of valid insurance shall be provided annually.

D. Exemptions. The following are exempted from the regulations of this chapter:

1. Fishing and hunting charters with a total capacity of six or less customers per excursion.

2. Guided overnight excursions occurring outside the townsite service area. (Ord. 18-09-512 § 26)

5.18.020 Number of permits available.

The number of available tour permits, other than the number of permits for a commercial helicopter ski tour, may be set by the assembly in December of each year for the following year. Renewal of existing permits by operators who have not had their permit revoked for failure to comply with this chapter shall have priority over new or expanded tour permit applications. A waiting list shall be maintained by the clerk. (Ord. 18-09-512 § 27; Ord. 10-10-243 § 8)

5.18.025 Fee designation.

A. For 2019, an applicant for a commercial tour permit required by this title shall pay the following nonrefundable application fee at the time of application:

1. Commercial tour permittees shall pay $75.00 for a company who annually serves fewer than 5,000 customers and $250.00 for a company who serves more than 5,000 customers annually.

2. Commercial Tour Vehicle Parking Permit. Tour permittees shall pay $10.00 per vehicle for less than 15-passenger vehicles and $25.00 per vehicle for larger than 15-passenger vehicles for a commercial tour vehicle parking permit to park at the Portage Cove Dock parking lot. Companies must park two vehicles designed to carry fewer than 15 passengers in one bus parking place at the PC Dock.

B. Permit Renewal Fee. The renewal fee for a permit required by this title is the same as the application fee for that permit under subsection (A) of this section.

C. Skier Day User Fee. Each commercial helicopter ski tour operator shall pay an annual nonrefundable fee in an amount equal to $5.00 per skier day used. The fee shall be paid no later than two weeks after the season ends for that year. (Ord. 18-09-512 § 28)

5.18.030 Application process.

A. Application for a commercial tour permit and permit renewal shall be made using the procedures set out in Chapter 5.04 HBC and this chapter.

B. An applicant must make application on the borough-approved commercial tour permit application and provide the following information:

1. Name, address, and telephone number of applicant and all principals.

2. Customer capacity; number of vehicles to be used; location of all phases of the tour(s), including where the tour(s) will be offered for sale and scheduled stops; a summary of the tour(s); a map showing the routes to be taken; and hours of operation. One copy of each published pamphlet or brochure describing each tour must accompany the application.

3. Broker’s certificate of $500,000 of current commercial general liability insurance naming the borough as additional insured. The policy shall not contain any self-insured retention or deductible in excess of $1,000 and shall include a provision requiring written notification to be given to the borough by the insurance company not less than 30 days before the policy is canceled, modified, or terminated for any reason.

4. Proof of worker’s compensation insurance where applicable by law.

5. A copy of current Haines Borough business license.

6. Current copy of a signed tour operator’s code of conduct agreement which shall be approved by the borough assembly.

7. An explanation of any felony conviction within the past five years.

8. A safety and operating plan for heli-skiing and helicopter tours.

C. Applications for new commercial tours shall require a public hearing and approval of the assembly as described in HBC 5.18.040 prior to issuance of a permit. (Ord. 18-09-512 § 29; Ord. 14-03-371 § 5; Ord. 05-03-098; Ord. 05-02-097)

5.18.040 Public hearing for commercial tours required.

A. An applicant for a commercial tour permit shall provide, in addition to the application, any additional information the clerk considers appropriate to adequately notify the public of the proposed tour, based upon the nature of the tour. Upon receipt of a new commercial tour application, or upon determination that a renewal application requires a hearing per HBC 5.18.060, the clerk shall fix a time and place for a public hearing before the assembly. Notice in writing of such hearing shall be given to the applicant. Due notice shall also be given to the general public by publishing a notice of such hearing in a local newspaper at least five days prior to the hearing containing a brief description of the proposed tour and indicating that a detailed description of the tour will be made available at the clerk’s office and publicly posted.

B. The clerk shall post, in the same posting places used for other postings, a detailed description of the proposed tour, including route maps and numbers of persons anticipated to be taken on each tour, as well as any other information the clerk considers appropriate to illustrate the impacts of the tour on the community.

C. The police chief, tourism director, and harbormaster shall review any application for a tour and, for all tours subject to a hearing, submit a recommendation to the assembly for consideration prior to the scheduled hearing. In addition, any person may file with the clerk a written submittal in support of or in opposition to the issuance of a permit and/or may voice the person’s opinions at the hearing. The assembly will consider all verified comments before acting on the permit application. (Ord. 18-09-512 § 30; Ord. 05-02-097)

5.18.050 Issuance of permit.

If the assembly, after the public hearing under HBC 5.18.040, finds that the applicant for the proposed commercial tour is fit, willing, and able to perform such tour and to conform to the provisions and purposes set out in this title, then the assembly will authorize the issuance of a permit by the clerk. The assembly may require that issuance of the permit be subject to designated conditions.

5.18.060 Renewal.

A commercial tour permit issued for the previous year may be renewed upon application to the clerk. The review standards that apply to initial permit applications shall apply to applications for the renewal of a permit, except that a renewal application does not require a hearing under HBC 5.18.040 unless the applicant proposes to expand the capacity of an existing tour. (Ord. 18-09-512 § 31; Ord. 10-10-243 § 9; Ord. 05-02-097)

5.18.065 Reporting.

A. By November 1st, and before renewal of permit, all permittees except Commercial Heliski Tours must report all actual numbers of annual customers for the previous year. Tour operators required to submit totals to a state or federal entity must also report these totals to the borough clerk.

B. Disposition of Commercial Tour Report Records. Commercial tour report records in the possession of the borough shall be kept confidential except when their production is required in an official investigation or court proceeding. This restriction does not prohibit the publication of statistics presented in a manner that prevents the identification of particular reports and items. Commercial tour report records shall be destroyed as per an adopted retention schedule. (Ord. 18-09-512 § 32)

5.18.070 Permit revocation, suspension or reduction in skier day allocation.

A commercial tour permit may be revoked or suspended or the number of skier days allocated pursuant to HBC 5.24.030 may be reduced for the reasons identified in HBC 5.04.120 and in accordance with the procedures set forth in HBC 5.04.120. (Ord. 18-09-512 § 33; Ord. 10-10-243 § 10)

5.18.075 Appeal from decision of manager.

A. An applicant or permittee desiring to appeal a decision of the manager made pursuant to this chapter shall, within 15 days after the written decision is mailed to the applicant or permittee, file with the manager a written notice of appeal to the assembly. The notice of appeal shall state with particularity the order or decision from which the appeal is taken and the grounds of the appeal. The stated grounds will be the only issues considered by the assembly in the appeal.

B. Filing of a notice of appeal under this section will operate to stay a decision of the manager to deny renewal of a permit.

C. Upon receipt of the notice of appeal, the mayor shall set the date of the hearing before the assembly. The mayor shall notify the appellant of the time and place of the hearing. The notice of the appeal hearing shall be given to the appellant at least three days prior to the hearing.

D. After the appeal hearing, the assembly may modify, revoke, rescind, or affirm the order from which the appeal is taken, or may enter its own order. A decision of the assembly may be appealed to the proper court. (Ord. 18-09-512 § 34)

5.18.080 Reserved.

Repealed by Ord. 18-09-512. (Ord. 16-08-441 § 4; Ord. 14-08-390 §§ 5 – 7; Ord. 13-07-339 §§ 4, 5; Ord. 12-10-306 §§ 7 – 9; Ord. 12-01-279 § 4; Ord. 10-10-243 § 11)