CHAPTER 39 - MOTOR VEHICLES
AN ACT REGULATING THE USE OF THE PUBLIC HIGHWAYS OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE AND IMPOSING A TAX UPON CARRIERS FOR THE USE THEREOF.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Delaware in General Assembly met:
Section 1. NAME:--This act shall be known as the "Motor Transportation Act."
Section 2. DEFINITIONS:--When used in this act the terms:
(a) MOTOR VEHICLE means any self-propelled or motor-driven vehicle and any trailer or semi-trailer attached- thereto, used upon any public highway in this state in transporting persons or property, except vehicles operating wholly on fixed rails or tracks.
(b) PUBLIC HIGHWAY means every street, alley, road, highway and thoroughfare in this state used by the public or dedicated or appropriated to public use.
(c) DEPARTMENT means State Highway Department.
(d) PERSON means an individual, firm, copartnership, corporation, company, association or the assignees, vendees, lessees, trustees or receivers of any of them.
(e) PUBLIC CARRIER means any person who transports for hire, or who holds himself out to the public as willing to transport for hire, compensation or consideration by motor vehicle, from place to place, persons or property, or both, for those who may choose to employ him.
(f) CONTRACT CARRIER means any person engaged in transportation by motor vehicle of persons or of property, or of both, for hire, under special and individual agreements or leases, and not included in the term public carrier as hereinbefore defined.
(g) PRIVATE CARRIER means any person engaged in the transportation by motor vehicle of property sold or to be sold by him in the furtherance of any private commercial enterprise, or property of which such person is the owner or lessee, when transported for the purpose of lease or rent.
(h) GROSS LOAD WEIGHT means the sum of the weight of the motor vehicle plus the weight of the maximum load which such motor vehicle may carry as declared by the applicant and approved by the Department at the time of the issuance of the permit. For the purpose of this act, the gross load weight of passenger carrying motor vehicles shall be the light weight of the vehicle plus the weight of the passengers. The weight of the passengers in pounds shall be computed by multiplying the maximum seating capacity of the vehicle including the seat of the driver by 150.
(i) SAFE FOR OPERATION shall mean mechanical safety and compliance with such regulations regarding equipment and operation as shall be specified by law or by rule of the Department.
() MOTOR CARRIER means public carrier, contract carrier and private carrier.
(g) EXTREME MILES means the extreme miles or route miles or schedule miles operated by a vehicle over the public highways except the extra miles that may become necessary to operate a vehicle in traversing detours or temporary routes on account of road blockades in excess of the number of miles that would otherwise be required to make the trip by usual highway route.
Section 3. EXEMPTIONS:--No portion of this act except this section and Section 19 shall apply to persons operating motor vehicles (a) when operated wholly within the limits of an incorporated city or town and for a distance not exceeding three road miles beyond the corporate limits of the city or town in Delaware in which the original starting point of such vehicle is located and which operation either alone or in conjunction with another vehicle or vehicles is not a part of any journey beyond said three-mile limit; or (b) when engaged exclusively in transporting students or their instructors to or from school; or (c) when regularly operating over a rural mail route exclusively under contract with the postal department of the federal government; or (d) when used exclusively by the owner thereof in transporting from point of original production on farm or orchard of such owner in this state the products of said farms or orchards to creameries or to plants devoted to conditioning and packing the products for shipping or when used exclusively by the owner thereof in the transporting of said products from said point of origin to market; or the infrequent transportation on trucks having a capacity of not to exceed one and one-half tons and for nominal consideration by one farmer or orchardist for another farmer or orchardist in his immediate neighborhood of products of the farm, orchard or dairy to market, and the infrequent transportation on such trucks for nominal consideration from market to farm or orchard of foodstuffs or other commodities consumed on said farm or orchard, shall not constitute transportation for hire within the provisions of this act; or (e) vehicles owned and operated by the United States, the State of Delaware, or any county, city, town or municipality in this State, or by any department of any of them; and (f) vehicles especially constructed for towing, wrecking, etc., and not otherwise used in transporting goods and merchandise for compensation.
Persons included in all exempted classes in this section mentioned shall register their vehicles with the Department before the same are put into use; and the Department shall issue for, and the persons operating such motor vehicles shall maintain thereon a distinctive marker indicating that the vehicles are operated exclusively in said exempted classes. No vehicle shall be operated in any of the exempted classes, except classes (a), (c), (d) and (e) without having been first approved by the Department as being safe for operation upon the public highways. It shall be unlawful for any vehicle which is operated under any said exempted classes to be operated for any uses or purposes not falling within said exempted classes.
Section 4. DECLARATION OF POLICY:--The business of operating as a motor carrier of persons or property for hire upon the highways of this State is declared to be a business affected with the public interest. The rapid increase of motor carrier traffic, and the fact that under existing law many motor trucks, trailers and busses are not effectively regulated, have increased the dangers and hazards on public highways and make it imperative that more stringent regulations should be employed, to the end that the highways may be rendered safer for the use of the general public; that the wear of such highways may be reduced; that minimum of inconvenience to other users of the highways may be effected; that minimum hindrance and stoppage to other users of the highways compatible with the needs of the public for adequate transportation service, may be effected; that the highways may be safeguarded from improper or unnecessary usage; that operation by irresponsible persons or any other operation threatening the safety of the public or detrimental to the general welfare be prevented; that the various transportation agencies of the State may be adjusted and correlated so that public highways may serve the best interest of the general public; that it is necessary that statutes be passed to provide a method of assessing privilege taxes to provide for the operation, preservation and maintenance of highways already built, and the legislature hereby declares that to effect the foregoing ends and purposes this statute is adopted.
Section 5. No motor carrier, as herein defined, shall operate any motor vehicle for the transportation of either persons or property, or both, on any public highway in this State, except in accordance with the provisions of this act.
Section 6. MOTOR CARRIERS REGULATED:--The Department hereby is vested with power and authority, and it shall be its duty to supervise and regulate all motor carriers of persons or of property, or of both, as defined in Section 2 of this act, and with respect thereto:
(a) To prescribe and require reasonable precautions for safety of operation of motor vehicles;
(b) To relieve the highways of all undue burdens and to safeguard traffic thereon by promulgating and enforcing reasonable rules, regulations and orders designed and calculated to prevent serious highway congestion, and to minimize the dangers attending transportation on the public highways of all persons and commodities including explosives or highly inflammable or combustible liquids, fluids, substances or gases.
Section 7. RULES AND REGULATIONS:--The Department shall have power and is required, by general order or otherwise, to prescribe and enforce rules and regulations in conformity with this act and to better accomplish the enforcement of its provisions, and the same shall cover and include motor carriers and their operations. The Department may make such subdivisions of the carriers as classified herein as may work to the efficient administration of this act, and shall do all things necessary to carry out and enforce its provisions.
Without restricting the general powers hereby conferred upon the Department to prescribe and enforce rules and regulations as aforesaid, the Department is vested with special authority with respect to the following matters, namely:
1. MOTOR VEHICLES:--Require the weighing of same loaded and empty at reasonably frequent intervals; inspect and require proper equipment and markings of same and insure the making of necessary repairs, all to promote efficient and safe operation; prescribe and require the character of appliances to be used on motor vehicles operated by public carriers and contract carriers whereby to establish correct mileage traveled by such vehicles and for the care and inspection of same and determine route and schedule mileages for each fixed termini public carrier as a basis for the payment by it of the ton mileage tax hereinafter prescribed.
2. HOURS OF SERVICE:--Prescribe the limit of hours that drivers or operators of motor vehicles may remain on duty at any time, and the number of hours of release from duty required; provided, that no motor carrier or person shall require, or knowingly permit, any truck or bus driver or his helper to drive or operate a truck or bus for a period longer than 10 consecutive hours, either within or outside the State, and whenever such driver or helper shall have been constantly on such duty for 10 hours, he shall be relieved and shall not be required or knowingly permitted to again go on duty until he has had at least 8 consecutive hours off duty; and no such driver or helper who has been on such duty 10 hours, in the aggregate, in any 24-hour period shall be required or knowingly permitted to continue or again go on duty without having had at least 8 consecutive hours off duty; provided, that in case of emergencies caused by act of God the foregoing restrictions as to hours shall not apply. The Department may revoke the permit of any person for violations of the law or rules governing hours of service. An employee shall be deemed to be on duty as long as he shall be required to be in or remain upon the vehicle, or engaged in loading or unloading said vehicle, during said period.
3. ADDITIONS TO AND WITHDRAWALS OF EQUIPMENT AND EXTENSIONS AND CONTRACTIONS OF ROUTES:--Prescribe rules governing amendments of permits covering additions to and withdrawals of vehicles and the extension or contraction of routes, and the filing of applications therefor.
4. CLASSIFICATION:--Classify and reclassify carriers in accordance with subparagraphs (f), (g) and (h) of Section 2 of this act.
5. ACCOUNTS AND BLANKS:--Prescribe forms of accounts and records to be kept, reports to be made and blanks to be used by public and contract carriers in transportation operations and matters incidental thereto.
6. MILEAGE:--Prescribe such methods and means as the department determines to be necessary for checking, verifying and ascertaining the number of miles traveled by each and all motor vehicles operated by every motor carrier, and insure that the mileage charged for is computed on basis of extreme mileage traveled.
7. DISTINGUISHING MARKS:--Prescribe distinguishing marks, signs, colors, lights, tags and plates as may be convenient or necessary for distinguishing classes of carriers or for protective or regulatory purposes.
8. ACCIDENT REPORTS:--Prescribe for the reporting of accidents connected with the operation of motor vehicles and in such detail and manner as the Department requires.
All rules and regulations pursuant to this act made by the Department and filed in its office shall have the force and effect of law, and violation thereof shall be subject to punishment as in the case of other provisions of this act.
Section 8. PERMITS:-1. It shall be unlawful for any person to operate any motor vehicle on any highway in this state as a motor carrier, in the transportation of persons or property or both without first applying for and obtaining, in addition to the license required by law, a permit from the Department covering the proposed operation.
The Department shall prescribe forms of application for permits for the use of applicants and shall make regulations of the filing thereof.
In the case of public carriers and contract carriers the application shall state the ownership, financial condition, equipment to be used and the light and combined weights thereof, the physical property of the applicant, character of service (whether transportation of property or of persons), the district or territory in which operation is to be conducted, and if upon fixed route, the termini thereof, and such other information as the Department may require.
If the applicant be a private carrier, the application shall state the ownership, equipment to be used, the light and combined weight thereof, and character of property to be transported and such other"information as the Department may require.
No vehicle shall be operated in more than one of the three classes covered by the provisions of this act; provided that vehicles carrying persons may also carry baggage and express or be operated as charter cars, and provided further that in the discretion of the Department, and under such rules, regulations, restrictions and conditions as it may prescribe, a vehicle registered and licensed as a private carrier may be operated temporarily as a contract carrier or public carrier exclusively in intrastate transportation.
No permit shall be granted to any person if the Department finds that he is not capable of conducting the transportation service contemplated and in compliance with the law and rules and regulations of the Department or who has been an habitual or intentional violator thereof. No person whose application for permit has been denied shall be eligible to renew the application for a period of six months or to operate or participate directly or indirectly in the proposed operation for a period of six months from the date of the order denying the application.
The Department shall, in issuing permits, classify the applicants to their proper class under the law and no carrier shall operate in a different class without permit from the Department.
2. Motor carriers engaged or to engage exclusively in interstate operations shall make application to the Department for permit and pay the application fee as provided for in this act, but the Department shall issue permit to them without the necessity for a hearing and as a matter of course, conditioned that they furnish an insurance policy and a good faith bond as required by this act and upon tender of the permit make the deposit required by Section 15. Said person so engaged exclusively in the conduct of interstate transportation shall:
(a) Currently pay to the Department the road tax mileage fees prescribed by Section 15 and Section 16 of this act;
(b) Observe and comply with the provisions of the laws of this State regulating traffic on itt highways, or the operation of motor vehicles thereon, or limiting the size, weight, height or speed of motor Vehicles;
(c) Observe and comply with the laws of this State and with the orders, rules and regulations of the Department to protect the highways from substantial damage and to promote safety to other users thereof and to adjacent property and facilities and to the public.
3. The Department shall, with respect to each vehicle, issue a receipt stating therein the light and the combined weight of each vehicle involved, which receipt shall be carried with the vehicle at all times, and it shall be unlawful for any person to load any motor vehicle in excess of its combined weight permit rating thus determined except as variations may necessarily result in passenger loading.
Section 9. APPLICATION FEE:--In addition to the other fees and taxes prescribed by law, and to assist in defraying the expenses of administering this act, every person applying for any permit hereunder except applicants for or holders of temporary permits shall remit to the Department with his application and, if a permit be granted, anually thereafter on or before July 1st of each year, a fee of $5.00 for each motor vehicle used or to be used and for each vehicle subsequently added to his permit.
All application fees and annual permit fees shall be credited to the motor carrier account of the State Highway fund and such fees shall be retained by the Department in the event the permit is granted and forthwith by the Department paid into the State Treasury to be credited to the State Highway fund. Every applicant for temporary permit provided for in Section 11 shall remit to the Department with his application a fee of $1.00.
Like fees in each case shall be paid for each motor vehicle involved in applications for transfer of permits.
Section 10. PERMITS; TERM OF AND CANCELATION: --Permits (except temporary permits) when issued shall be valid for one year and, subject to the priority rules and other provisions of this act, shall be renewable from time to time at the expiration thereof for a like period, but, if at any time after notice to permittee and upon hearing had before the Department the continued operation be found by it to be against the public interest or unduly congesting the highway or fraught with substantial danger to users of the highway or to the public, or inflicting substantial damage to the highway, thereupon the Department shall cancel the permit so investigated or condition the operation thereunder as conditions in said respect require.
Permits shall be canceled by the Department after hearing complaint and notice or upon its own motion when:
(c) The permittee is delinquent in the payment of any fees or taxes due under the law or the provisions of this act, provided that written demand for payment thereof has been served upon him by the office upon which the duty to collect same is imposed at least 10 days before the complaint or notice for cancellation was filed, or
(d) The permittee or his agents or employes have repeatedly violated this act or other highway or motor laws of this State, or
(e) The permittee has repeatedly and intentionally violated or avoided any order, rule or regulation of the Department.
Any person may, at the instance of the Department, be enjoined from any violation of the provisions of this act or of any order, rule or regulation of the Department made and on file with the Department pursuant to the terms of this act. If such suit be instituted by the Department no bond shall be required as a condition to the issuance of such injunction.
Section 11. TEMPORARY PERMITS:--If any motor carrier coming into the State shall not be registered and have a permit as by this act required, but shall be duly licensed under the laws of some other state, a temporary permit may be issued to said carrier for one particular trip into or through the state. Said permit shall be issued only upon condition that said motor carrier complies with all the requirements of this act relating to the issuance of other permits, provided that in no case shall the liability insurance coverage of said carrier be less than five thousand ($5,000.00) dollars for any one person nor less than ten thousand ($10,000.00) dollars for all persons who may sustain injuries, nor less than five thousand ($5,000.00) dollars for property damage.
Section 12. PERMIT, LIMIT UPON ASSIGNMENT:--No permit issued under this act or any prior law shall be assigned or otherwise transferred without the written approval of the Department, nor shall such permit be construed to be either a franchise, or irrevocable, or exclusive, or to confer any property right upon the holder thereof.
Section 13. FEES AND TAXES:--In addition to the license fees or taxes otherwise imposed by law upon motor carriers there shall be assessed against and collected from every such carrier a tax graduated as follows:
1. On motor vehicles having a gross load weight of less than five (5) tons 1/2 mill per ton mile. '
0. On motor vehicles having a gross load weight of five (5) tons and less than eight (8) tons 1 mill per ton mile.
1. On motor vehicles having a gross load weight of eight (8) tons and less than twelve (12) tons 11/2 mills per ton mile.
2. On motor vehicles having a gross load weight of twelve (12) tons and less than seventeen (17) tons 2 mills per ton mile.
3. On motor vehicles having a gross load weight of seventeen (17) tons and less than twenty-three (23) tons 21/2 mills per ton mile.
4. On motor vehicles having a gross load weight of twenty-three (23) tons or more 3 mills per ton mile.
Said tax is for the use of the state highways, to apply on the cost of the administration of this act and for the maintenance, repair and reconstruction of public highways. The said gross load weight ton mileage shall be computed as follows:
(a) The gross load weight shall be computed on the basis of even tons; a major fraction shall be considered as a ton.
(b) The maximum seating capacity of each passenger carrying motor vehicle shall be estimated at 150 pounds per passenger seat, including drivers seat, exclusive of emergency seats; to this sum shall be added in pounds the weight of the vehicle and the total shall constitute the gross load weight of such vehicle; the total shall then be multiplied by the extreme number of miles operated and the amount thus obtained divided by 2,000; provided, that in cases where a bus has a seating capacity which is not arranged for separate or individual seats, 16 lineal inches shall be deemed the equivalent of a passenger seat.
(c) The rated capacity in pounds of each property carrying vehicle as set forth by the Department in the permit issued by him to the carrier, plus the weight in pounds of the motor vehicle, shall constitute the gross load weight of such motor vehicle and shall be multiplied by the extreme number of miles the vehicle is operated and the amount thus obtained divided by 2,000; provided, however, that any motor carrier may apply to the Department for the establishment of a fixed monthly mileage for any particular vehicle operated as a motor carrier which monthly mileage shall be used as a base for computing the monthly payments to be made as provided in Section 15 of this act. Upon satisfactory showing, the Department may fix and establish such fixed mileage which shall in no case for any single vehicle be less than 500 miles per month, and thereafter monthly payments for such vehicles shall be computed upon such base or fixed mileage and the gross load weight of such vehicle as provided herein. If any carrier is dissatisfied with the base mileage determined by the Department, such carrier may have the correct mileage determined with the use of sealed speedometer or odometer readings satisfactory to the Department, and the Department may, on its own motion, determine the exact mileage by the use of sealed speedometers, or other sealed device satisfactory to the Department in either of which events the monthly base theretofore fixed by the Department shall be changed to conform as nearly as practicable to the average monthly mileage thus determined.
Every motor carrier shall deposit with the Department upon the issuance of his permit and on the first day of July of each succeeding year thereafter, the following sums: For each motor vehicle of three tons or less (gross load weight) the sum of $20.00 and an additional deposit of $6.00 for each additional ton in excess of three tons gross load weight, provided, however, that no carrier shall be required to deposit a total sum in excess of $1,000.00. This deposit shall be construed to be the annual minimum of taxes to be paid under this act by any such carrier or carriers, and every such carrier or carriers shall receive credit for this amount as against the fees provided for in the preceding paragraphs of this section. When such fees exceed such minimum and when such minimum deposit is exhausted, the carriers involved shall make monthly payment of fees as hereinafter provided.
In the event that, with respect to any vehicle exclusively engaged in interstate transportation, such annual deposit for any single vehicle exceeds the annual fee or charge for such vehicle computed on the ton mile rate so provided in this act, then such excess shall, when determined, be refunded to such carrier.
Section 13-A. Motor vehicles duly registered under the laws of the State of Delaware, and bearing license plates issued by the Motor Vehicle Commissioner, shall not be required to pay the tax imposed by Section 13 of this Act, nor to make the deposit provided for in said Section, nor to furnish the bond required in paragraph 2 of Section 17 of said Act.
Section 13-B. If any tax similar to the one imposed by this Act is imposed by any other State or foreign country for the use of its highways on motor vehicles registered under the laws of this State, the tax rates on foreign motor vehicles registered under the laws of such state or foreign country when using the highways of this State, under the provisions of this Act, shall be equal in amount to that imposed in such case by such other state or foreign country, but in no event shall the amount be less than the amount fixed in this Act.
Section 14. DAILY RECORDS BY CARRIERS:--Every motor carrier, when not electing to pay on a fixed mileage basis, shall keep daily records upon forms prescribed by the Department of all vehicles used during the current month. On or before the twentieth day of the month following, they shall certify under oath to the Department upon forms prescribed therefor the summaries of their daily records which shall show the gross ton mileage traveled in this state during the preceding month and other such informa tion as the Department may require. The daily records shall be filed and thereafter preserved until written permission for their destruction shall have been given by the Department. Any person who shall wilfully under oath make a false certificate hereunder to the Department shall be deemed guilty of perjury.
Section 15. MONTHLY PAYMENTS AND LIENS:--On or before the twentieth day of each month, after the minimum deposit as provided for in Section 13 is exhausted, all motor carriers shall pay to the Department the amount of the fees due from them for the preceding calendar month. If payment is not made on or before said date, there shall be added as a penalty a sum equal to one percent per month of the amount of the original fee. It shall be the duty of the Department to notify the surety or sureties of such delinquencies.
Section 16. STATUTORY AGENT:--Each public carrier and contract carrier residing or having his or its principal place of business outside the State of Delaware shall, at or before the time of commencing operation into, through or within the State of Delaware, file with the Secretary of State a duly executed instrument in writing, constituting the Secretary of State and his successors in office the true and lawful attorney upon whom all process, summons or notices in any action, suit or proceeding against such car rier, caused by or relating to the operation of motor vehicles of or by such carrier within the State, may be served, and shall therein agree that any process, summons or notice against such carrier shall be of the same force and effect as if served on such carrier within this state. The service of process, summons or notice upon such carrier may be made by leaving a copy thereof, together with a copy of the complaint or order, in the office of the Secretary of State and said Secretary of State shall forthwith notify such carrier of such service by letter directed to him or it at his or its residence or principal place of business as shown by the records of the Department.
Section 17. INSURANCE AND BONDS:-1. No permit shall be issued to any person to operate as a motor carrier until he has filed with the Department an insurance policy of public liability and property damage, issued by an insurance company authorized to transact business as such within this state, and in accordance with the policies, forms and manuals on file with the insurance commissioner, for such limits of liability, terms, conditions and provisions as the Department may determine to be necessary for the reasonable indemnification of the patrons of the applicant and of the public against damage and injury for which the applicant may be liable by reason of the operation of any motor vehicle as defined in this act.
As an alternative, and in lieu of said insurance policy, a bond to the State of Delaware may be filed with surety satisfactory to the Department and in all respects conditioned to meet the requirements imposed in relation to insurance policies by the provisions of this act.
In fixing the amount of said insurance policy or bond the Department shall give due consideration to the character and amount of traffic and number of persons involved and the degree of danger which the proposed operation involves, but in no case shall the amount of liability insurance or bond required be less than that provided for insurance in Section 11 of this act.
2. No permit shall be issued to any person to operate as a motor carrier until he has filed with the Department a bond satisfactory to the Department and in such penal sum, not more than $1,000.00, as the latter may deem necessary, payable to the State of Delaware with a surety company qualified to do business in the state as surety thereon, conditioned that the applicant shall pay any and all fees, taxes and penalties which may be or become due under the provisions of this act, and shall faithfully comply with all lawful decisions, orders, rules and regulations of the Department made pursuant to same.
3. No insurance policy or bond furnished under the provisions of this act may be cancelled or otherwise terminated at any time prior to its expiration until the indemnity or surety company which executed the same has filed with the Department a notice of cancellation; such cancellation to be effective not less than 30 days from the date of receipt, and no agreement between the parties thereto shall operate to avoid this restriction upon cancellation. If any such insurance policy or bond shall become inoperative, the authority under the permit involved shall cease and be suspended until an insurance policy or bond meeting the requirements of subsections 1 and 2 of Section 17, as the case may be, shall become effective and be filed with said Department.
Section 18. ADMINISTRATION AND ENFORCEMENT: --The Department shall appoint an assistant to be known as "Superintendent of Transportation," who shall have immediate charge, under the supervision of the Department, of the administration and enforcement of this act. The Department shall have power to appoint and employ such auditors and other help as may be necessary to enable it at all times properly to administer same. The Department shall extend to said Superintendent, inspectors and employes such duties and authority within the provisions of this act as the Department determines to be necessary efficiently to administer and enforce the same; provided, however, that the Department shall utilize the state police wherever and whenever activities are necessary to the end that there may be no duplication of service or expense. Within the purport and meaning of this section all field work, inspection of equipment, weighing of loads and such other field service as pertains to operation of vehicles on the public highways other than auditing and inspection of books, records and accounts hereby are declared to be police functions and duties.
Hearings may be conducted by the Department or its designated representative at any place in Delaware, and the Department or any representative authorized by it so to do shall have power to compel the attendance of witnesses by subpoena, swear witnesses, take their testimony under oath and make record thereof, and the Department may render its decision upon such record.
In all cases wherein a hearing is contemplated or provided for under this act, at least 10 days' written notice thereof shall be served by the Department by mail or otherwise upon the party or parties involved; provided, however, that the Department may if such action is warranted, hold hearing upon shorter notice to be prescribed by its order.
Section 19. All fees, taxes, charges and other sums collected by the Department under this act shall be by the Department paid into the State Treasury of the State of Delaware and shall be by the State Treasurer placed to the credit of the State Highway fund, and such an amount as may be necessary is hereby appropriated out of such fund for the payment by the Department of all expenses of whatsoever nature incurred in administering and enforcing this act.
Section 20. DEPARTMENT TO COLLECT:--All fees, taxes and charges herein provided for imposed by this act and all claims and penalties payable by any person under this act and all moneys collected hereunder shall be the property of the State. The Department shall collect and receive all fees, taxes, penalties and moneys due or to become due to the State under the provisions of this act and, to that end, shall bring such actions or take such proceedings in the name of the State of Delaware as may be necessary.
The Department shall issue its receipt for such payment or payments made under the provisions of this act, but such receipt or receipts shall not be final or conclusive as to the amount of the charge or fees due from and payable by the motor carrier. If the Department shall thereafter determine that the report of any such carrier or carriers for any period is not true and correct, it shall make a bill against said carrier for any underpayment of charge caused by untrue or incorrect report and the carrier involved shall pay the same within 10 days after presentation thereof, or the Department shall refund to said carrier the amount of any overpayment caused by any untrue or incorrect report.
Section 21. ENTRY FIIGHWAYS AND REGISTRATION STATIONS:--In order to facilitate the enforcement of this act it is hereby declared necessary, and the Department shall designate a sufficient number of highways entering the State reasonably to meet the needs and requirements of motor carriers coming within the provisions of this act, and which enter the State from points beyond its boundary. It shall be unlawful for any carrier to enter the State upon any highway thereof other than those designated by the Department.
The Department shall also establish registration stations to be located upon highways as near the State line as conveniently may be. It shall be the duty of the Department to maintain at each of said stations a sufficient personnel reasonably to meet the requirements thereof for the purpose of inspection and registration service at all times.
Every motor carrier entering the State and coming within the provisions of this act must enter on a highway so designated by the Department, and stop at the registration station and submit to inspection and meet all other requirements imposed by the provisions of this act. The driver of such motor vehicle shall be required to make out and deliver to the person or inspector in charge of such registration station a registration card showing (a) the name and address of the owner of the motor vehicle, (b) the name of the operator or driver, (c) the state in which said vehicle is licensed and the number thereof, (d) the motor number of the vehicle and a description of its type, (e) the point of origin and the ultimate destination of said vehicle, (f) the gross load weight thereof, (g) the amount of liability insurance or bond and the name of the company issuing the policy, and (h) information as to the number of hours the driver of the motor vehicle has been on duty, both within and outside the State, and (i) serial number of the state permit.
The person or inspector in charge of such registration station shall check and verify the information contained in the registration card. He shall inspect such vehicle and see that all the requirements of this act are complied with before allowing said carrier to proceed upon the highways of the State.
In case said motor vehicle does not have a permit, as required by this act, said person or inspector may issue a temporary permit, as provided in Section 11, and collect fees therefor and the tax imposed by this act.
The Department shall furnish to all carriers to whom a permit has been issued registration card blanks.
Section 22. ASSISTANCE BY OFFICERS:--It hereby is made the duty of the Attorney General of the State, and of all state, county and city police officers to assist the Department in the administration and enforcement of this act, and they and each of them, as well as the Department, its Superintendent of Transportation, inspectors and employes, shall inform against and diligently prosecute any and all persons whom they have reasonable cause to believe guilty of violation of the provisions of this act or of the rules, regulations, orders, decisions or requirements of the Department made pursuant thereto.
Section 23. PENALTIES:--Every motor carrier to which this act applies, and every person who violates or procures, aids or abets in the violating of any of the provisions of this act, or who refuses or fails to obey any order, decision, rule or regulation, shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor, and upon conviction shall be punished by a fine of not exceeding Two Thousand ($2,000.00) Dollars, or imprisonment for not more than one year, or both in the discretion of the Court.
Section 24. INTERSTATE COMMERCE:--This act and every part thereof shall apply and be construed to apply to interstate and foreign commerce, except in so far as the same may be in conflict with the provisions of the constitution and the laws of the United States.
Section 25. Annually, on or before June 30 of each year, the Department shall make to the Governor a report of its administration of this act, which shall include, among other things, facts and statistics relating to the effect of the administration of this act upon the classes of carriers affected thereby.
Section 26. SAVING CLAUSE:--If any provision, section, subsection, subdivision, sentence, clause, or phrase of this act shall for any reason be adjudged or declared by any court of competent jurisdiction to be unconstitutional or invalid, such judgment or decision shall not affect the validity of the remaining portions of this act, but shall be confined in its operation to the provisions, section, sub-section, subdivision, sentence, clause or phrase directly involved in the controversy in which such judgment to decision shall have been rendered, and it hereby is expressly declared that every other provision, section, subsection, subdivision, sentence, clause or phrase hereof would have been enacted irrespective of the enactment or validity of the portion thereof declared or adjudged to be unconstitutional or invalid.
Section 27. EFFECTIVE DATE:--This act shall be and become effective upon such date as may be fixed by the Governor, but not until such time as laws having for their object the general purposes embraced in this act and imposing a tax on motor vehicles registered under the laws of this State shall have become effective in at least two neighboring States.
Section 28. All acts or parts of acts inconsistent with the provisions of this act are hereby repealed to the extent of such inconsistencies.
Approved April 18, 1935.