Chapter 5.79
TRANSPORTATION NETWORK COMPANY

Sections:

5.79.010    License required.

5.79.020    Definitions.

5.79.030    TNC license required.

5.79.040    TNC driver requirements.

5.79.050    TNC requirements.

5.79.060    Vehicle inspection and maintenance.

5.79.070    Insurance requirements.

5.79.080    Registered agent requirement.

5.79.090    Audit.

5.79.100    Operational requirements.

5.79.110    Revocation, suspension, or denial of TNC license.

5.79.120    TNC driver reporting requirements.

5.79.130    Enforcement.

5.79.150    Severability.

5.79.010 License required.

A.    It is a violation of this chapter for any TNC to operate in the city of Yakima without a current and valid Yakima business license issued pursuant to Chapter 5.52 YMC.

B.    It is a violation of this chapter for any TNC driver, who is an independent contractor affiliated with a TNC, to operate in the city of Yakima without a current and valid Yakima business license issued pursuant to Chapter 5.52 YMC.

C.    The business license requirements of this section are separate from other licensing requirements stated in other sections of this chapter. (Ord. 2020-006 § 30, 2020: Ord. 2016-020 § 1 (part), 2016).

5.79.020 Definitions.

A.    “Transportation network company” or “TNC” means an entity that uses a digital network to connect passengers to TNC drivers who use personal vehicles to transport passengers for compensation between geographical points chosen by the passenger.

B.    “Digital network” means an Internet-enabled platform or application used to connect passengers with TNC drivers.

C.    “TNC driver” means an individual who uses a personal vehicle to provide transportation services arranged through a TNC’s digital network.

D.    “TNC vehicle” means a personal vehicle used by a TNC driver to provide transportation services arranged through a TNC’s digital network.

E.    “Operate a TNC in the city of Yakima” means a TNC uses its digital network to connect a TNC driver to a passenger for a trip originating in the city of Yakima.

F.    “Operate as a TNC driver in the city of Yakima” means a TNC driver accepts a trip request over a TNC’s digital network that originates in the city of Yakima.

G.    “Person” means any natural person of either sex, firms, corporations, partnerships and associations either acting by themselves or by servant, agent or employee. The singular shall include the plural and the masculine pronoun shall include the feminine and neuter.

H.    “Administration” means the office of code administration for the city of Yakima. (Ord. 2016-020 § 1 (part), 2016).

5.79.030 TNC license required.

A.    It is a violation of this chapter for any TNC to operate in the city of Yakima without a current and valid city of Yakima TNC license.

B.    Administration may issue a TNC license; provided, that the TNC applicant submits an affidavit sworn under penalty of perjury, on a form provided by administration, that to the best of the applicant’s knowledge, formed after a diligent inquiry into the facts, the TNC is in full compliance with this chapter, including, but not limited to, all driver, vehicle, insurance, and operational requirements.

C.    The TNC license shall be effective for one year.

D.    The annual TNC license fee shall be one thousand dollars and shall be paid in full at the time of submitting all initial and renewal applications. (Ord. 2016-020 § 1 (part), 2016).

5.79.040 TNC driver requirements.

A.    TNC drivers shall certify under the penalty of perjury that they have no known physical or mental infirmity which jeopardizes their ability to safely operate as a TNC driver transporting the public.

B.    TNC drivers shall be at least twenty-one years of age.

C.    TNC drivers shall possess a valid Washington State driver’s license and shall have been continuously licensed as a driver by the state of Washington and/or another state for at least one year immediately prior to operating as a TNC driver in Yakima. A home state driver’s license with active military ID or student ID with proof of full-time enrollment and nonresident status may be an acceptable alternative, subject to review and approval.

D.    TNC drivers shall not have been convicted or found to have committed either: 1) any one infraction for negligent driving or 2) three or more moving violations during any twelve-month period during the three years prior to operating as a TNC driver in Yakima.

E.    TNC drivers shall possess proof of motor vehicle registration and proof of current in-state automobile liability insurance. The TNC shall certify that it maintains insurance coverage for use of the vehicle for transportation of passengers for-hire as required by RCW 48.177.010 as enacted or subsequently amended. (Ord. 2016-025 § 1, 2016: Ord. 2016-020 § 1 (part), 2016).

5.79.050 TNC requirements.

A.    The TNC or its agent shall maintain accurate and up-to-date records for all TNC drivers accessing its digital network to provide TNC services in the city of Yakima. Said records shall include the driver’s name, age, address, social security number, criminal history, driver’s license, motor vehicle registration, vehicle safety inspection records, and proof of at least the minimum automobile liability insurance coverage required by the state of Washington, including insurance for use of the vehicle for transportation of passengers for-hire as required by RCW 48.177.010 as enacted or subsequently amended.

B.    Prior to permitting a person to act as a TNC driver on its digital network, and annually thereafter, the TNC shall conduct, or have a third party conduct, a criminal background check report for such person. The criminal background check shall include a search of no less than seven years of database history, unless prohibited by law, in which case the duration of the search shall be the maximum number of years permitted by law. The criminal background check shall include multi-state/multi-jurisdiction criminal records locator or other similar commercial nationwide database with validation and the U.S. Department of Justice National Sex Offender Public Website. The TNC shall not permit a person to act as a TNC driver on its digital network who is a match in the U.S. Department of Justice National Sex Offender Public Website, is considered a habitual traffic offender under RCW 46.65, or who has a criminal conviction, within the past seven years, of any violent offense defined by RCW 9.94A.030(55), any serious violent offense defined by RCW 9.94A.030(46), any most serious offense defined by RCW 9.94A.030(33), any sexual offense defined by RCW 9.94A.030(47), cyberstalking under RCW 9.61.260, harassment under RCW 9A.46.020, stalking under RCW 9A.46.110, any offense under RCW 9A.36, or a driving under the influence, reckless driving, hit and run, or any other driving-related crime within RCW 46.61.500 through 46.61.540. The TNC or its agents shall maintain records of such criminal background checks for a period of two years. For purposes of this section, the term “criminal conviction” includes a “conviction or other disposition adverse to the subject” as defined under RCW 10.97.030, and bail forfeitures.

C.    Subsection B of this section shall apply regarding a conviction of any offense committed in another jurisdiction that includes all of the elements of any of the offenses described or defined in that subsection.

D.    The TNC shall only permit an individual to act as a TNC driver on its digital network if it finds that the standards set forth in this section and YMC 5.79.040 are met by such individual. The TNC shall revoke a driver’s authority to act as a TNC driver on its digital network if the standards set forth in this section and YMC 5.79.040 are not met. (Ord. 2016-025 § 2, 2016: Ord. 2016-020 § 1 (part), 2016).

5.79.060 Vehicle inspection and maintenance.

A.    TNC vehicles operating in the city of Yakima shall be no more than ten years old.

B.    The TNC shall inspect or cause to be inspected annually and every year thereafter, every motor vehicle used by a TNC driver before allowing the driver to use the motor vehicle to provide transportation services. Such inspection shall be performed by an ASE certified mechanic.

C.    The inspection required in subsection B of this section must include, without limitation, an inspection of the foot and emergency brakes, steering, windshield, rear window, other glass, windshield wipers, headlights, tail lights, turn indicator lights, braking lights, front seat adjustment mechanism, doors, horn, speedometer, bumpers, steering system, muffler, exhaust, tires, rear view mirrors, and safety belts. The inspection must ensure that all of the components listed are in proper functioning order.

D.    The TNC shall maintain vehicle safety inspection records for a minimum of three years. (Ord. 2016-020 § 1 (part), 2016).

5.79.070 Insurance requirements.

The TNC and TNC driver shall comply with the automobile liability insurance requirements set forth in this chapter and as contained in RCW 48.177.010 as enacted or subsequently amended. (Ord. 2016-025 § 3, 2016: Ord. 2016-020 § 1 (part), 2016).

5.79.080 Registered agent requirement.

The TNC shall maintain a registered agent for service of process in the state of Washington. The name, telephone number, and physical address of the registered agent shall be submitted to the city of Yakima at the time of license application. The TNC shall notify the city of Yakima in writing of any changes to its registered agent during the term of the license. (Ord. 2016-020 § 1 (part), 2016).

5.79.090 Audit.

A.    No more than once per license year, administration may audit the TNC’s records to review compliance with this chapter. Each audit shall be limited to all relevant records required by this chapter relating to no more than twenty randomly selected TNC drivers operating in the city of Yakima. In the event the audit reveals discrepancies in the records reviewed, administration reserves the right to audit other records related to the specific investigation. Any record furnished may exclude information that would tend to identify specific drivers or riders beyond their first and last names.

B.    The audit shall occur at City Hall, 129 North Second Street, Yakima, WA 98901; provided, that the city may in its discretion agree to an alternative location.

C.    Notwithstanding the foregoing, the city may require the TNC to produce records directly related to an active investigation or to investigate a specific allegation of a violation regarding compliance with this chapter. (Ord. 2016-025 § 4, 2016: Ord. 2016-020 § 1 (part), 2016).

5.79.100 Operational requirements.

A.    TNC drivers shall accept only rides arranged through a TNC’s digital network and shall not solicit or accept street hails.

B.    The TNC’s application or website shall display for the passenger the first name and photograph of the TNC driver as well as the make, model, and license plate number of the TNC vehicle.

C.    The TNC’s application or website shall display for the passenger the applicable rates being charged or fare to be paid and the option to receive an estimated fare before the passenger enters the TNC vehicle.

D.    The TNC shall implement a zero tolerance policy on the use of drugs or alcohol applicable to any TNC driver on its digital network. The TNC shall provide notice of the zero tolerance policy on its website, as well as the procedures to report a complaint about a driver with whom the passenger was matched and who the passenger reasonably suspects was under the influence of drugs or alcohol during the course of the ride. The TNC shall suspend a driver as soon as possible upon receipt of a passenger complaint alleging a violation of the zero tolerance policy. The suspension shall last the duration of the investigation.

E.    A TNC driver shall not operate as a TNC driver in the city of Yakima unless his or her TNC vehicle equipment, including, but not limited to, lights, brakes, tires, steering, seat belts, are in proper working order, and only when the TNC vehicle has a seatbelt for each passenger and is in a sanitary and safe condition for the transportation of passengers.

F.    No TNC driver shall allow any nonpaying passenger, except nonpaying passengers accompanied by an adult paying passenger, to ride in a TNC vehicle occupied by any paying passenger, nor shall the driver pick up any additional passengers in a TNC vehicle occupied by a paying passenger without the express consent of the paying passengers.

G.    No TNC driver shall allow any third party to operate his or her TNC vehicle while the TNC driver is logged into the network of his or her affiliated TNC.

H.    No TNC driver shall discriminate against passengers or potential passengers on the basis of race, color, national origin or ancestry, religious belief or affiliation, sex, disability, age, sexual orientation, marital status, gender identity, familial status or honorably discharged veteran or military service. (Ord. 2016-025 § 5, 2016: Ord. 2016-020 § 1 (part), 2016).

5.79.110 Revocation, suspension, or denial of TNC license.

A.    A TNC license may be revoked or suspended by the city manager for any of the following reasons:

1.    Failure to meet or maintain any of the requirements or qualifications set forth in this chapter for obtaining a TNC license.

2.    A materially false statement contained in the application for the license.

3.    Any violation of this chapter by the TNC.

Any applicant who feels aggrieved by the revocation or suspension of a license by the city manager may appeal that revocation to the city council by serving on the Yakima city clerk a notice of such appeal within five business days of the date of the revocation from which the appeal is taken, which notice shall be in writing and shall specify all the grounds relied upon by the appellant as reasons for the reissuance of the license which was revoked or suspended. After the timely filing of such a notice, the city clerk shall set a time and place for a hearing thereon by the city council, after which hearing the city council shall make a final determination on the matter. The city council may add conditions if the final determination is to reissue the license.

B.    A TNC license may be denied for any of the following reasons:

1.    Failure to meet or maintain any of the requirements or qualifications set forth in this chapter for obtaining a TNC license.

2.    A materially false statement contained in the application for the license.

3.    Any violation of this chapter of obligations by the TNC.

4.    Any failure to provide requested information to evaluate a license or failure to provide documents pursuant to the audit provisions of this chapter.

Any applicant who feels aggrieved by the denial of a license by the administration may appeal that denial to the city council by serving on the Yakima city clerk a notice of such appeal within five business days of the date of the denial from which the appeal is taken, which notice shall be in writing and shall specify all the grounds relied upon by the appellant as reasons for the issuance of the license which was denied. After the timely filing of such a notice, the city clerk shall set a time and place for a hearing thereon by the city council, after which hearing the city council shall make a final determination on the matter. The city council may add conditions if the final determination is to issue the license.

C.    Any decision of the city council made under subsection A or B of this section may be appealed to the Yakima County superior court within twenty calendar days of the city council’s final decision. (Ord. 2016-025 § 6, 2016: Ord. 2016-020 § 1 (part), 2016).

5.79.120 TNC driver reporting requirements.

Every TNC driver shall report to his or her affiliated TNC within forty-eight hours the occurrence of any of the following:

A.    Any arrest, charge or conviction of the TNC driver for any criminal offense, or commitment of a criminal law violation that occurs during, or arises out of the TNC driver’s operation of the TNC vehicle.

B.    Any arrest, charge or conviction of any offense listed in YMC 5.79.050.

C.    Any vehicle accident required to be reported to the state of Washington that occurs while the TNC driver is operating as a TNC driver in the city of Yakima.

D.    Any restriction, suspension or revocation of the TNC driver’s license to drive, insurance, or registration of the vehicle.

E.    Any changes in health or medical condition of the TNC driver that might cause the TNC driver to be unfit for the safe operation of any TNC vehicle. (Ord. 2016-025 § 7, 2016: Ord. 2016-020 § 1 (part), 2016).

5.79.130 Enforcement.

Administration shall have the administrative authority to implement and enforce this chapter. Administration may adopt rules and regulations for its administration, not inconsistent with this chapter. This provision shall not be construed to abrogate or limit the jurisdiction of the Yakima police department to enforce any provisions of this chapter or of any other state law or city ordinance relating to motor vehicles or the operation of taxicabs or TNC vehicles. (Ord. 2016-020 § 1 (part), 2016).

5.79.150 Severability.

If any section, subsection, subdivision, sentence, clause or phrase of this chapter is for any reason held to be unconstitutional or void, then such decision shall not affect the validity of the remaining portions of this chapter. (Ord. 2016-020 § 1 (part), 2016).