Chapter 5.20


5.20.010    Definitions.

5.20.020    License required.

5.20.030    License exceptions.

5.20.040    Annual applications.

5.20.050    Massage establishment licenses.

5.20.060    Repealed.

5.20.070    License application investigation.

5.20.080    License – Special requirements.

5.20.090    Display of license.

5.20.100    License – Prerequisites to issuance.

5.20.110    License revocation.

5.20.120    Change of location or employment.

5.20.130    Sale, transfer or expansion.

5.20.140    Register of employees – Notice of new attendant.

5.20.150    Prohibition of certain services and operations.

5.20.160    Applicability of regulations to existing businesses.

5.20.170    Occupational licensing regulation.

5.20.010 Definitions.

In this chapter, unless the context otherwise requires, the following words and phrases shall be construed as follows:

A. “Massage therapy” means a health care service involving the external manipulation or pressure of soft tissue (muscles, tendons, ligaments) for therapeutic purposes. Massage therapy includes, but is not limited to, effleurage, petrissage, tapotement, tapping, compression, application of direct pressure, vibration, friction, nerve strokes, or movements by manual or by electrical, mechanical or vibratory apparatus.

B. “Massage establishment” means a place of business wherein any of the methods listed in subsection A of this section are administered or practiced for compensation or from which is dispatched a person for administering or practicing massage therapy, and includes an establishment providing baths and other forms of hydrotherapy; provided, that the business of providing sauna baths or shower facilities for patrons or customers shall not be considered within this definition. A massage establishment must comply with building and safety codes, fire codes, and health codes as established by Pima County and the town of Sahuarita.

C. “Massage therapist” means a person who is licensed by the Arizona State Board of Massage Therapy.

D. “Recognized school of massage” means an institution of learning which teaches the theory, practice, application, and ethics of massage therapy, anatomy and physiology, and basic hydrotherapy. The institution must offer a residential course of study and require no less than 500 hours of classroom instruction and training, issue a certificate or diploma upon successful completion of the course of study, and provide an official transcript. If located within the state of Arizona, such an institution must be licensed by the state Board of Private Technical and Business Schools.

E. “Attendant” means any employee who administers any of the services of a massage establishment within the bath or massage rooms. [Ord. 2019-137 § 1; Ord. 2009-13 §§ 2, 3; Ord. 1996-11; prior code § 11-4-1.]

5.20.020 License required.

A. It shall be unlawful for any person, association, firm or corporation to operate a massage establishment without first obtaining and maintaining a massage establishment license as required by this chapter.

B. It shall be unlawful for any person, association, firm or corporation to employ as a massage therapist any person who does not hold a current unrevoked and unsuspended massage therapist license issued by the Arizona State Board of Massage Therapy.

C. It shall be unlawful for any person, association, firm or corporation licensed as provided in this chapter to operate under any name or conduct business under any designation not specified in such license. [Ord. 2019-137 § 1; Ord. 2009-13 § 4; Ord. 1996-11; prior code § 11-4-2.]

5.20.030 License exceptions.

No license shall be required under this chapter for:

A. Naturopaths, chiropractors, physical therapists, osteopathic physicians or medical doctors who hold state licenses, nor shall the attendants working under the direct supervision and in the same establishment as such excepted individuals be required to hold a license under this chapter.

B. Persons employed as athletic trainers for any bona fide athlete or athletic team, while acting within the scope of that employment. [Ord. 2019-137 § 1; Ord. 1996-11; prior code § 11-4-3.]

5.20.040 Annual applications.

Each licensee under this chapter shall apply for a license annually by application either by following the procedure for an original license, or by filing an affidavit stating that the information contained on their most recent application is current, true and correct. There shall be no automatic renewal of the license by the town clerk. Fees shall be required upon original application and annually thereafter. [Ord. 2019-137 § 1; Ord. 1996-11; prior code § 11-4-4.]

5.20.050 Massage establishment licenses.

Any person, association, firm or corporation desiring to obtain a massage establishment license shall apply to the town clerk, who may refer such application to an authorized law enforcement agency for investigation of the veracity of the information contained therein. Any corporation or firm making application must do so through an agent who shall be a natural person and meet the qualifications for licensure. An applicant for a massage establishment license shall submit the following:

A. The full legal name and current residence address of the applicant;

B. Any name by which the applicant has been known during the previous five years;

C. The address at which applicant desires to do business;

D. Written proof that the applicant is over the age of 18 years;

E. The applicant’s height, weight, hair and eye color;

F. A portrait photograph, at least two inches square in size, taken within the previous six months;

G. The employment history of the applicant during the previous five years;

H. The business history of the applicant, and whether the applicant has had a business license revoked or suspended, the reason therefor, and the business activity engaged in which was subject to such suspension or revocation;

I. All felony and misdemeanor convictions of the applicant, excluding those for civil traffic offenses, and the grounds for such convictions;

J. The applicant’s complete fingerprints, if needed by law enforcement;

K. The names and copies of all licenses of all employees to be employed as massage therapists;

L. Such other identification and information as law enforcement may require in order to confirm the facts of the matters above;

M. Each application for a massage establishment license shall be accompanied by a fee as set forth in Chapter 3.10 STC. Such fee in each instance shall be paid upon application for the license, and if for any reason a license is not issued, such fee shall be deemed an application fee and not returnable to the applicant. [Ord. 2019-137 § 1; Ord. 2008-07 § 7; Ord. 1996-11; prior code § 11-4-5.]

5.20.060 Massage therapist license.

Repealed by Ord. 2009-13. [Ord. 2008-07 § 8; Ord. 1996-11; prior code § 11-4-6.]

5.20.070 License application investigation.

A. Any applicant for a license pursuant to these provisions shall present the application containing the required information to the town clerk. The investigating office shall have a reasonable time in which to investigate the veracity of the information on the application. The investigating office shall report the findings of such investigation to the town clerk.

B. The town clerk may receive and review the criminal history record information, including conviction and nonconviction data, of license applicants for the purpose of evaluating the fitness of prospective licensees in connection with the issuance, renewal, suspension or revocation of a massage establishment license. Such information shall be used only for the purpose of such evaluation. The town clerk shall submit a full set of the license applicant’s fingerprints to the Arizona Department of Public Safety for the purpose of obtaining a state and federal criminal records check pursuant to ARS 41-1750 and Public Law 92-544. The Arizona Department of Public Safety may exchange this fingerprint data with the Federal Bureau of Investigation. [Ord. 2019-143 § 1 (Exh. A); Ord. 2019-137 § 1; Ord. 1996-11; prior code § 11-4-7.]

5.20.080 License – Special requirements.

A. No massage establishment license shall be issued or renewed unless inspection by the town building inspector or his/her designee indicates the site of the establishment complies with each of the following minimum requirements:

1. Compliance with all applicable state, county, and town laws;

2. Adequate equipment shall be provided for disinfecting and sterilizing instruments used in administering or practicing any of the subjects or methods of treatment listed in STC 5.20.010;

3. Hot and cold running water, tempered by means of a mixing valve faucet, shall be provided at all times;

4. Closed cabinets shall be provided, and used, for the storage of clean linens;

5. Adequate dressing and toilet facilities shall be provided for patrons. One dressing room (may be the same as the massage treatment room), one toilet and one wash basin shall be provided by every massage establishment with one to three treatment rooms. Another toilet and wash basin must be provided when there are four or more treatment rooms in an establishment. A minimum of one shower or tub shall be provided for any establishment offering colon therapy, colonics or any hydrotherapy services such as whirlpool baths, saunas, steam baths, herbal wraps, etc. Each dressing room/treatment room shall contain a locker for each patron to be served, which locker shall be capable of being locked;

6. All showers, bathtubs, steam rooms, toilets and wash basins shall be thoroughly cleaned each day business is in operation and in good repair and maintained in a clean and sanitary condition. Shower compartments and bathtubs, where provided, shall be thoroughly cleaned after each use;

7. Clean and sanitary sheets and towels shall be provided for each patron of the establishment. The head rest of each table shall be provided with a clean and sanitary covering for each patron;

8. A hand wash basin shall be provided in each treatment room providing colon therapy, colonics, or hydrotherapy services such as whirlpool baths, saunas, steam baths, or herbal wraps.

B. In the event that a massage establishment is located in a private residence, the following additional requirements must be met:

1. A separate room that is not used as a living space must be provided;

2. Only one massage treatment room within a residence is permitted;

3. Toilet and wash basin facilities shall be located on the same floor as the massage treatment room and shall be easily accessible to the massage treatment room;

4. A massage establishment shall be separated from the residence by complete partitioning and doors; and

5. All other guidelines outlined in this section shall be complied with. [Ord. 2019-137 § 1; Ord. 1996-11; prior code § 11-4-8.]

5.20.090 Display of license.

Every person, association, firm or corporation to whom a license has been granted shall display the license in a conspicuous place upon the business premises. The town building inspector or his designee may inspect all places of business subject to the provisions of this chapter, and shall report all violations to the town clerk. [Ord. 2019-137 § 1; Ord. 2009-13 § 6; Ord. 1996-11; prior code § 11-4-9.]

5.20.100 License – Prerequisites to issuance.

No license for the operation of a massage establishment shall be issued by the town clerk or his/her authorized agent unless and until he/she has received notice from law enforcement, if submitted, and the town building inspector or their designees that the applicant has fully complied with the requirements of this chapter and has determined that the applicant is not in breach of any of the grounds for revocation of STC 5.20.110. [Ord. 2019-137 § 1; Ord. 1996-11; prior code § 11-4-10.]

5.20.110 License revocation.

A. The license of a massage establishment may be revoked, suspended or denied by the town clerk upon any one or more of the following grounds:

1. The licensee is guilty of fraud in conducting the business of massage establishment, or of fraud or deceit in obtaining a license to conduct such business;

2. The licensee has been convicted within the last five years in a court of competent jurisdiction of a felony or of any offense involving moral turpitude;

3. The licensee is guilty of untrue, fraudulent, misleading or deceptive advertising;

4. The licensee is guilty of willful negligence in the business of massage therapy;

5. The licensee is engaged in the business of massage therapy establishment under a false or assumed name, or is impersonating another practitioner;

6. The licensee has engaged in the unlawful practice of any of the healing arts subject to Arizona state licensing, except massage as defined in this chapter;

7. The licensee has violated any other of the provisions of this chapter.

B. A licensee whose license is revoked or suspended may request a hearing as provided in STC 5.45.020. [Ord. 2019-137 § 1; Ord. 2009-13 § 7; Ord. 1996-11; prior code § 11-4-11.]

5.20.120 Change of location or employment.

A. A massage establishment licensee must notify the town clerk within 15 days of any change in location of either his or her massage establishment, or any change of massage therapists operating from that location. Any change must be approved by the town clerk or his or her designee to verify that applicable ordinances and regulations of the town are complied with.

B. Repealed by Ord. 2009-13. [Ord. 2019-137 § 1; Ord. 2009-13 § 8; Ord. 1996-11; prior code § 11-4-12.]

5.20.130 Sale, transfer or expansion.

A. Upon the sale or transfer of a substantial interest in a massage establishment, the license therefor shall be null and void, unless the transaction was approved in advance by the town clerk, under the application procedure as outlined in STC 5.20.050. A new application shall be made by any person, association, firm or corporation desiring to own or operate the establishment.

B. Any such sale or transfer of any interest in an existing massage establishment, or any enlargement or expansion of the place of business of a massage establishment, shall require inspection and compliance with STC 5.20.080. [Ord. 2019-137 § 1; Ord. 1996-11; prior code § 11-4-13.]

5.20.140 Register of employees – Notice of new attendant.

The operator of each massage establishment shall keep and maintain an up-to-date register of all employees including the following: the employee’s name, his/her address, age, sex, duties and such other information as the town clerk may reasonably require. Upon hiring any attendant, the operator shall immediately notify the town clerk in writing and shall include in such notice the same information required to be in the register. [Ord. 2019-137 § 1; Ord. 1996-11; prior code § 11-4-14.]

5.20.150 Prohibition of certain services and operations.

No massage establishment shall:

A. Provide to any person, at any time, services which may be reasonably considered to be clearly dangerous to health or safety.

B. Remain open or provide services at any time between the hours of 12:00 midnight and 6:00 a.m. [Ord. 2019-137 § 1; Ord. 1996-11; prior code § 11-4-15.]

5.20.160 Applicability of regulations to existing businesses.

The provisions of this chapter shall apply to all activities regulated by this chapter, and such persons and businesses described herein, whether such activities were commenced before or after the effective date of the ordinance codified in this chapter. [Ord. 2019-137 § 1; Ord. 1996-11; prior code § 11-4-16.]

5.20.170 Occupational licensing regulation.

Occupational licenses are issued pursuant to ARS 9-842. [Ord. 2019-137 § 1.]