Chapter 2.32
COUNTY VEHICLES

Sections:

2.32.010    County motor pools established.

2.32.020    Motor vehicle assignment.

2.32.030    Permanent overnight vehicle assignment.

2.32.040    Storage of vehicles.

2.32.050    Service and repair.

2.32.060    Public Works Department vehicles.

2.32.070    Uses of vehicles for other than County purposes designated.

2.32.080    Prohibited uses.

2.32.090    Misuse of vehicles—Disciplinary action.

2.32.100    Misuse of vehicle—Suspension of driving permit.

2.32.110    Misuse of vehicle—Liability for costs.

2.32.120    Misuse of vehicle—Supervisor’s liability.

2.32.130    Actual costs—Designated.

2.32.140    Actual costs—Determination.

2.32.150    Misuse of vehicle—Investigation.

2.32.160    Rights of persons involved.

2.32.170    Investigation—Notice of preliminary decision.

2.32.180    Preliminary decision deemed final when.

2.32.190    Actual costs of operation—Supplemental determination.

2.32.200    Privately owned vehicle—Use for County business.

2.32.210    Privately owned vehicle—Insurance.

2.32.220    Privately owned vehicle—Reimbursement for use.

2.32.230    Driving permit—Required.

2.32.240    Driving permit—Issuance conditions.

2.32.250    Accident—Report requirements.

2.32.260    Accident—Investigation.

2.32.270    Accident—Disciplinary action authorized when.

2.32.280    Accident—Driving permit revocation.

2.32.290    Rules and regulations—Approval conditions.

2.32.300    Violation—Penalty.

2.32.010 County motor pools established.

There are established two County motor pools, from which all County motor vehicles licensed for highway travel shall be assigned. One motor pool shall consist exclusively of Public Works Department vehicles and equipment and the other shall consist of all other County vehicles. [Ord. 3869 § 1, 1987; Ord. 2487, 1977; Ord. 1466, 1969; Ord. 1302, 1968; Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.010].

2.32.020 Motor vehicle assignment.

County vehicles shall be assigned from the County or Public Works Department motor pools for use on County business in accordance with rules established by the County Administrative Officer. (See SCCC 2.32.290.) [Ord. 3869 § 2, 1987; Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.020].

2.32.030 Permanent overnight vehicle assignment.

All permanent overnight vehicle assignments of motor vehicles to County officers and employees shall be made by either the County Administrative Officer or the Director of Public Works. A County officer or employee to whom a motor vehicle is assigned on a permanent overnight basis may use the vehicle for commuting to and from work and for any County business outside regular working hours, SCCC 2.32.070 notwithstanding. [Ord. 3869 § 3, 1987; Ord. 2487, 1977; Ord. 1466, 1969; Ord. 1302, 1968; Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.050].

2.32.040 Storage of vehicles.

When not in use, County motor vehicles shall be stored in County garages and premises to the limits of the available capacity; but in the event that the number of County motor vehicles exceeds the space in the County garage or premises facilities, persons using County vehicles may be permitted to provide overnight off-street parking of such vehicles under rules established by the County Administrative Officer. [Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.040].

2.32.050 Service and repair.

County motor vehicles assigned from the County motor pool shall be serviced and repaired at the County motor pool when necessary, in accordance with standard practice, and under such rules as may be established by the County Administrative Officer. [Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.030].

2.32.060 Public Works Department vehicles.

(A)    The Director of the Public Works Department shall approve all requests for permanent vehicle assignment and requests for regular overnight assignment of vehicles to public works employees.

(B)    Vehicles and equipment of the Public Works Department shall be garaged, serviced and repaired within facilities maintained for the Public Works Department for that purpose. [Ord. 3869 § 4, 1987; Ord. 1302, 1968; Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.060].

2.32.070 Uses of vehicles for other than County purposes designated.

Use of a vehicle owned or maintained for use or service of the County for purposes other than County purposes includes:

(A)    When driven otherwise than in the performance or necessary to or in the course of any of the duties pertaining to County business;

(B)    When driven to or from his home by any person, unless departing upon or returning from an official trip under circumstances which make it impractical for such person to use other means of transportation;

(C)    When driven by any person to or from his home, after completion of such person’s workday, unless the motor vehicle is to be used by him in the conduct of County business on the same day or before his usual working hours on his next succeeding workday, and where such later use has been authorized in advance by his department head. The mere possibility that a motor vehicle may be used outside of business hours by a person “on call” does not qualify under this subsection in the absence of a permit from the County Administrative Officer;

(D)    When driven by any person between his home and place of work, unless with permission when no County garage facility is available, or unless under permit issued by the County Administrative Officer;

(E)    The use of a County vehicle otherwise than in the conduct of County business by a subordinate acting on direction from his superior;

(F)    When driven in violation of State or local laws;

(G)    When it clearly appears that the person operating a County vehicle failed to exercise reasonable and proper judgment. [Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.080].

2.32.080 Prohibited uses.

It is unlawful for any person to use, drive, employ or operate any motor vehicle owned, kept or maintained for use or service of the County for any purpose other than a County purpose, or in or about the performance of a duty for or on behalf of the County. [Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.070].

2.32.090 Misuse of vehicles—Disciplinary action.

Misuse of a County motor vehicle may be grounds for discipline, up to and including discharge by the employee’s appointing authority. The procedures for imposing such discipline shall be as provided in SCCC 3.24.030. [Ord. 2601, 1978; Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.090].

2.32.100 Misuse of vehicle—Suspension of driving permit.

Misuse of a County motor vehicle may be grounds for revocation or suspension of a driving permit by the County Administrative Officer or by the head of the department affected. [Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.110].

2.32.110 Misuse of vehicle—Liability for costs.

Every person shall be liable to the County for actual costs not otherwise covered by insurance proximately resulting from any misuse of a County motor vehicle by him or with his consent. [Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.130].

2.32.120 Misuse of vehicle—Supervisor’s liability.

Where and to the extent that a superior directs or authorizes misuse of a County motor vehicle, the superior and not the subordinate shall be liable. [Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.140].

2.32.130 Actual costs—Designated.

Actual costs shall include:

(A)    Expense of operation of a County vehicle for the distance traveled during misuse, or where the misuse amounts to an unreasonable deviation, then for the distance traveled in excess of the shortest practical route, computed on a mileage basis in accordance with the established mileage rate for payment of private mileage claims;

(B)    Any and all property damage to the County motor vehicle, and other property, proximately resulting from such misuse; provided, that a credit shall be allowed equal to any amount paid to the County by a third party;

(C)    The amount of any judgement or claim not covered by insurance that the County pays by reason of the death, injury or damage to person or property arising out of misuse of a County-owned vehicle, including interest at the legal rate accruing from the time of payment by the County. [Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.150].

2.32.140 Actual costs—Determination.

The County Administrative Officer shall determine the amount and enforce the collection of actual costs attributable to misuse of County motor vehicles. [Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.160].

2.32.150 Misuse of vehicle—Investigation.

Within 30 days after the County Administrative Officer has reasonable cause to believe that misuse of a County motor vehicle has occurred, or has been notified of such alleged misuse, he shall, without a formal hearing, initiate and complete a preliminary investigation with a view to determining the following:

(A)    Whether misuse occurred;

(B)    The person responsible for such misuse;

(C)    The actual costs resulting from such misuse, unless the same are not reasonably ascertainable at the time of the completion of the preliminary investigation. [Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.170].

2.32.160 Rights of persons involved.

Any person involved in the reported misuse shall, during the course of the investigation, be given an opportunity to give an explanation. [Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.180].

2.32.170 Investigation—Notice of preliminary decision.

Within five days after concluding the investigation, the County Administrative Officer shall make a preliminary decision, and serve a copy thereof on the person involved. [Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.190].

2.32.180 Preliminary decision deemed final when.

If no request for review is filed within the time allowed, the preliminary decision shall constitute the final decision. [Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.220].

2.32.190 Actual costs of operation—Supplemental determination.

Where the actual costs are for any reason not ascertained by the preliminary investigation, the amount thereof shall be ascertained in a new proceeding following the same procedure, unless there has been a final determination that no misuse occurred. [Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.230].

2.32.200 Privately owned vehicle—Use for County business.

County employees may use privately owned motor vehicles for County business when:

(A)    They are individually authorized by the County Administrative Officer;

(B)    There are no County motor vehicles available and the County Administrative Officer has authorized the use of privately owned motor vehicles for the particular departmental purposes involved; or

(C)    In case of emergency, in which event the department head may authorize and direct any subordinate officer or employee of the County to use a privately owned vehicle for an otherwise unauthorized purpose, subject to subsequent certification by the County Administrative Officer upon presentation of a claim for traveling expenses so incurred. [Ord. 2991, 1980; Ord. 2835, 1980; Ord. 2061, 1978; Ord. 1216, 1966; Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.240].

2.32.210 Privately owned vehicle—Insurance.

(A)    Every County employee who uses his automobile on County business pursuant to SCCC 2.32.200 must have in effect insurance coverage which covers the employee while he is using his car on County business.

(B)    The insurance coverage shall be not less than $15,000 for bodily injury to or death of each person as a result of any one accident and, subject to such limit as to one person, the amount of $30,000 for bodily injury to or death of all persons as a result of any one accident, and the amount of $5,000 for damage to property of others as a result of any one accident. [Ord. 1303, 1968; Ord. 1216, 1966; Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.250].

2.32.220 Privately owned vehicle—Reimbursement for use.

County employees who use privately owned motor vehicles for County business, and are properly authorized to do so in accordance with SCCC 2.32.200, shall be reimbursed for such use at the rates established by the current salary resolution. [Ord. 2020, 1974; Ord. 1216, 1966; prior code § 5.20.260].

2.32.230 Driving permit—Required.

No person shall operate a County motor vehicle unless he possesses a valid California operator’s license and a valid driving permit issued to him by the County Administrative Officer. [Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.270].

2.32.240 Driving permit—Issuance conditions.

In no event shall a County driving permit be issued to any person who does not have a valid current motor vehicle operator’s license duly issued by the State Department of Motor Vehicles. [Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.280].

2.32.250 Accident—Report requirements.

On all occasions in which a person engaged in County business is involved in a motor vehicle accident, such person shall, within 48 hours of the accident, make or cause to be made a report of such accident to the Mechanical Services Department. Such report shall be treated as a confidential document, and a copy of the report shall become a part of the files of the County Personnel Department. [Ord. 2601, 1978; Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.300].

2.32.260 Accident—Investigation.

(A)    The appropriate appointing authority shall investigate or cause to be investigated each motor vehicle accident in which a person engaged in County business is involved, and shall make a determination within 10 days of such accident, either by notation on the accident report, or in a separate departmental investigation report, of the cause of and responsibility for such accident, and whether it was a preventable accident. In the event of a finding that the accident was not a preventable accident, any suspension of a driving permit under SCCC 2.32.280, imposed as a result of such accident, shall terminate.

(B)    The County Safety Officer shall receive a copy of the accident report and investigation report, if any, for purposes of investigation, training and counseling to departments on accident prevention. Should the County Safety Officer disagree with the conclusions of the accident report and departmental investigation, all evidence shall be submitted to the County Administrative Officer for review.

(C)    As used herein, the term “preventable accident” means an accident wherein the County employee failed to use every reasonable means to avoid the accident. [Ord. 2601, 1978; Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.310].

2.32.270 Accident—Disciplinary action authorized when.

In the event that the appointing authority determines that an accident was a preventable accident, such authority may revoke the driving permit of the employee and may impose such other disciplinary action, up to and including discharge, as may be appropriate. Notice of the determination that an accident was preventable, and of the disciplinary action to be taken, shall be served on the person involved, as provided in SCCC 3.24.030. [Ord. 2601, 1978; Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.320].

2.32.280 Accident—Driving permit revocation.

In the event a person operating a County vehicle is involved in an accident with such vehicle, the employee’s appointing authority may suspend such person’s driving permit, pending an investigation of the accident, and may revoke such person’s driving permit as provided in SCCC 2.32.260 and 2.32.270. [Ord. 2601, 1978; Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.290].

2.32.290 Rules and regulations—Approval conditions.

No rule established by the County Administrative Officer under this chapter shall become effective until after such rule has been submitted to the Board of Supervisors and approved by the Board, and unless such rule is rejected by the Board or amended, it shall be deemed approved by the Board, and if amended, approved as amended. [Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.360].

2.32.300 Violation—Penalty.

Any person violating any of the provisions of this chapter shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be punishable by a fine of not more than $25.00; but no prosecution in any court for such violation shall be instituted without express authorization of the Board of Supervisors. [Ord. 563, 1958; prior code § 5.20.350].