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(A) (1) No person shall drive any vehicle for hire within the town nor between the town and any unincorporated place within five miles of the town until such person shall have been granted a permit by the Chief of Police or his or her designee to do so. Each application for a permit shall contain the name, age and address of the applicant, as well as a statement of whether the applicant has been convicted of a felony in North Carolina or a crime in another state which if committed in North Carolina would be a felony, a violation of any state statute relating to the use, possession or sale of intoxicating liquors, any federal or state statute relating to prostitution or any federal or state statute relating to the use, possession or sale of controlled substances, whether such applicant is a citizen of the United States, whether such applicant is an habitual user of intoxicating liquors or controlled substances, whether the applicant has been an habitual violator of traffic laws and ordinances, and whether the applicant is a registered sex offender. As provided in G.S. § 160A-304, an applicant shall be fingerprinted and photographed and shall sign a form consenting to the use of the applicant’s identifying information and fingerprints for the purposes of conducting a state criminal history records check through the North Carolina Department of Justice, Division of Criminal Information Network, and a national criminal history records check through the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The application shall be accompanied by the fee as required by the fee schedule and an additional amount to be determined by the Chief of Police or his or her designee to cover the cost of the fingerprint check. All fees are nonrefundable. All identifying information and information obtained from the criminal history records check shall be confidential and shall not be a public record under G.S. Ch. 132. This information shall be disseminated only to Town Police Department personnel and the Chief of Police or his or her designee to the extent necessary to enforce this section. The Chief of Police or his or her designee shall refuse to issue a permit to anyone who has been convicted of committing a felony or violating any law designated in this section or to anyone who is a habitual user of intoxicating liquors or controlled substances, a habitual violator of traffic laws and ordinances, a registered sex offender, or is not a citizen of the United States unless a legal resident with a valid green card.
(2) A criminal records check shall be performed of all taxicab driver applicants.
(3) Each applicant for a taxicab driver permit shall make application on a form provided by the Police Department. The application shall contain the applicant’s physical condition, former employers, and driver license number and state of issue and another information required on the application. The application shall be signed and notarized by the applicant.
(B) Each applicant or holder of a taxicab permit shall:
(1) Be at least 18 years of age, and eligible to work in the United States;
(2) Have possessed a driver license for the past 12 months issued by any state of the United States;
(3) Have not committed an offense of driving while subject to an impairing substance or with an alcohol concentration of 0.08, or more, within five years;
(4) Not have committed a felony unless his or her citizenship has been restored;
(5) Not have committed an offense relating to prostitution or controlled substances within five years; and
(6) Not have been convicted of more than two motor vehicle moving violations in the past 12 months.
(C) A taxicab driver applicant must not be physically or mentally incapable of operating a taxicab. Upon request by the Chief of Police or his or her designee, the applicant must submit a written opinion from a physician stating that the applicant is physically capable and/or mentally competent to operate a taxicab.
(D) The applicant shall not make a material false or misleading statement on the application for a taxicab driver permit. An applicant cannot submit more than one application in any 90-day period.
(E) An applicant or taxicab driver shall have a valid North Carolina driver’s license. Upon revocation of a driver’s license by the North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles or a court, a taxicab driver permit shall become automatically immediately revoked.
(F) Applicants for initial and renewal driver’s permits and permittees shall submit to and pass controlled substance examinations at such times and places determined by the Chief of Police or his or her designee. In addition, upon reasonable suspicion or after an accident involving any such driver, the driver may be required to pass a controlled substance examination. The applicants and drivers shall bear the cost of such examinations. Such examinations shall be conducted by a nationally recognized laboratory, and the person being examined shall comply with all directions of the laboratory.
(G) Each driver’s permit issued by the Chief of Police or his or her designee under this section shall indicate the name, age and residence of the permittee and a copy of the photograph of the permittee shall be attached thereto. Every driver of a vehicle for hire shall, at all times, while driving the same upon the public streets of the city, carry the driver’s permit issued to him or her under this section. All drivers’ permits shall be valid for one year following the date of issuance.
(H) No permit issued under the provisions of this section shall be transferable. Every such permit shall be subject to cancellation by the Chief of Police or his or her designee for the violation of any of the provisions of this chapter or any state or local law governing and regulating the operation of vehicles for hire. A driver’s permit shall be issued only to the owner or lessee of the vehicle or an employee of such owner or lessee. A lessee shall not be required to hold a vehicle for hire license in addition to a driver’s permit.
(I) The fee for a driver’s permit shall be in the amount of $15 and shall be due annually prior to the issue or renewal of the permit. Costs as provided in division (A) above must also be paid prior to the issue or renewal of a permit.
(Ord. passed 12-1-2009)