CHAPTER 270

MOTOR VEHICLES REGULATION OF TAXICABS

AN ACT TO AMEND CHAPTER 165 OF THE REVISED CODE OF DELAWARE, 1935, AS AMENDED, TO PROVIDE FOR LICENSING OF OWNERS AND OPERATORS OF TAXICABS AND SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS THEREFOR INCLUDING COMPULSORY INSURANCE, SPECIAL INSPECTION AND MARKING OF TAXICABS AND PENALTIES FOR VIOLATIONS.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Delaware in General Assembly met:

Section 1. That Chapter 165 of the Revised Code of Delaware, 1935, as amended, be further amended by adding the following new sections to be known and styled as follows:

MOTOR VEHICLES--ARTICLE 10

OWNERS AND OPERATORS OF TAXICABS

5719a. Sec. 181a. Registration of Taxicabs; Title:--(a) It shall be unlawful for any person to drive or move or for an owner knowingly to permit to be driven or moved upon any highway any taxicab which is not registered as a taxicab and for which a certificate of title has not been issued or applied for or for which current taxicab registration plates have not been issued as provided in this Act or for which the appropriate fees, have not been paid when and as required by this Article, except that when application accompanied by the proper fee has been made for taxicab registration and certificate of title for a vehicle the same may be operated temporarily pending complete registration upon displaying a duplicate application duly verified or other evidence of such application, or otherwise under rules and regulations promulgated by the Department. No motor vehicle registered hereunder shall be required to register under 5545. Sec. 7. of this Revised Code, as amended, provided such motor vehicle is used solely and exclusively in transporting a person or persons for hire in the accommodation of the public.

5719b. Sec. 181b. Application for Registration of Taxicabs; Financial Responsibility:--(a) Every owner of a vehicle desiring registration hereunder shall make application to the Department for the registration thereof as a taxicab and/or issuance of a certificate of title for such vehicle upon the appropriate form or forms furnished by the Department. Every such application shall bear the signature of the owner written with pen and ink and said signature shall be acknowledged by the owner before a person authorized to administer oaths. Said application shall contain:

(1) The name and address of the owner. When the owner is an individual, the address shall be the bona fide residence of the individual. When the owner is a partnership, association, trust or corporation, the address shall be that of the principal office thereof wherever located, together with the address of the principal office within the State of Delaware, if any.

(2) A description of the vehicle, including insofar as the hereinafter , specified data may exist with respect to a given vehicle, the make, model, type of body, the number of cylinders, the serial number of the vehicle, the engine or other number of the vehicle and whether new or used, and, if a new vehicle, the date of sale by the manufacturer or dealer to the person intending to operate such vehicle;

(3) A statement of the applicant's title and of all liens or encumbrances upon said vehicle, the names and addresses of all persons, firms or corporations, having any interest therein, the nature of every such interest, and the name and address of the person, firm or corporation, to whom the certificate of title shall be delivered by the Department;

(4) Such further information as may reasonably be required by the Department to enable it to determine whether the vehicle is lawfully entitled to registration and the owner entitled to a certificate of title.

When such application refers to a new vehicle purchased from a dealer the application shall be accompanied by the bill of sale or other written statement of the sale by the dealer, which bill of sale or statement shall show any lien upon said vehicle retained by the dealer.

(b) In the event that the vehicle, for which registration is applied, is a specially constructed, reconstructed, or a foreign vehicle, such fact shall be stated in the application, and with reference to every foreign vehicle which has been registered theretofore outside of this State the owner shall surrender to the Department all registration cards, and certificates of title or other evidence of such foreign registration or ownership as may be in his possession or under his control, except where in the course of interstate operation of a vehicle registered in another 'state it is desirable to retain registration of said vehicle in such other State, such applicant need not surrender but shall submit for inspection said evidences of such foreign registration or ownership and the Department upon a proper showing may register said vehicle in this State, but shall not issue a certificate of title therefor.

(c) The Department shall not register or re-register a vehicle as a taxicab until and unless the owner shall produce evidence to the Department of his financial ability during the registration period to respond in damages as follows:

(1) If he apply for registration of taxicabs, in the sum of at least Ten Thousand Dollars for any one person injured or killed and in the sum of Fifty Thousand Dollars for any number more than one injured or killed in any one accident and in the sum of Five Thousand Dollars for any injury to property in any one accident.

(2) If he apply for the registration of more than one taxicab then in the foregoing sums for one taxicab and Ten Thousand Dollars additional for each taxicab in excess of one; but it shall be sufficient for the owner to demonstrate his ability to respond in damages in the sum of One Hundred Thousand Dollars for any number of taxicabs.

The Department shall cancel the registration of any taxicab whenever the Department ascertains that the owner has failed or is unable to comply with the requirements of this subsection (c).

(d) Where the engine of a taxicab which has been registered under the provisions of this Act is replaced by a new or used engine, on which the engine number has been destroyed, removed, covered, altered, or defaced, it shall be the duty of the owner of such motor vehicle to apply to the Department, on a form furnished by the Department, for a special number to be placed on said engine. The application shall be accompanied by the certificate of title issued for said taxicab and shall contain a description of such taxicab and facts pertaining thereto, as the Department may require. Said application shall be sworn to by the owner before a notary public or other officer empowered to administer oaths. Upon receipt of such an application, the Department shall issue to the owner a special number for said taxicab and a corrected certificate of title and, when such special number has been placed on the engine, it shall become and thereafter be the lawful engine number of said taxicab.

5719c. Sec. 181c. Temporary Taxicab Registration Permits:--The Department may, in its discretion, grant temporary or limited taxicab registration permits, in no case to be valid for more than fifteen (15) days and may issue appropriate certificates or other evidence therefor as follows:

(3) When application for a certificate of title has been made accompanied by the proper fee, temporary permit without additional fee may be issued pending action upon such application by the Department.

(4) During suspension of registration because of failure of the vehicle upon inspection to meet the legal performance requirements or equipment standards a temporary permit without additional fee may be issued to allow the vehicle to be driven away to be repaired and returned for inspection, or to be driven to a storage place.

(3) When a registration has expired, a temporary permit may be issued upon the payment, of a fee of One Dollar in addition to the regular fee for re-registration so that the vehicle may be driven to a place for repair, if necessary, and to an inspection station preparatory to re-registration.

(4) For the movement of unregistered vehicles by persons entitled to move the same, when it is not proposed to secure a certificate of title or a transfer of title to such vehicle, a temporary permit may be issued for which a fee of One Dollar shall be charged.

(5) For moving vehicles of which the ownership has been transferred by process of law as provided in Section 191 of this Article a permit may be issued without charge.

5719d. Sec. 181d. Register of Applicants to be Kept by Department:--The Department shall file each application received and when satisfied as to the genuineness and regularity thereof, and that the applicant is entitled thereto, shall register the vehicle therein described, and the owner thereof, in suitable books or on index cards as follows:

(1)Under a distinctive taxicab registration number assigned to the vehicle, hereinafter referred to as the taxicab registration number. Such taxicab registration number may consist of a numerical figure or figures, or of a letter or letters with a numerical figure or figures;

(0)Under the name of the owner;

(1)Under the engine number and name of the vehicle.

5719e. Sec. 181e. Department to Issue Certificate of Title and Taxicab Registration Card:--The Department upon registering a taxicab shall issue a taxicab registration card, and a certificate of title if no certificate of title has been issued therefor pursuant to 5548. Sec. 10. of the Revised Code, as amended.

(b) The taxicab registration card shall be delivered to the owner and shall contain the date issued, the name and address of the owner, the taxicab registration number assigned to the vehicle, such description of the vehicle as may be determined by the Motor Vehicle Commissioner, the period for which the vehicle is registered, a form for endorsement of notice to the Department upon transfer of the vehicle, and a space in which the signature of the owner must be placed to validate the card.

(c) Excepting the period of registration the certificate of title issued hereunder shall contain upon the face thereof the identical information required upon the face of the registration card and in addition thereto, a statement of the owner's title and of the liens and encumbrances upon the vehicle therein described as noted in the application, and whether possession is held by the owner under a lease, contract of conditional sale, or other like agreement. Said certificate shall bear thereon the seal of the Department.

(d) The certificate of title shall also contain a space for the signature of the owner in order to validate the same and forms for assignment of title or interest and warranty thereof by the owner with a space for notation of liens and encumbrances upon the vehicle at the time of a transfer.

() The certificate of title shall be delivered to the registered owner unless another person has been named to receive the certificate in the application, in which event the certificate shall be delivered to such person.

5719f. Sec. 181f. Taxicab Registration Card to be Carried:--The taxicab registration card issue for a vehicle required to be registered hereunder shall at all times, while the vehicle is being operated upon a highway within this State, be in the possession of the operator thereof or carried in the vehicle and subject to inspection by any peace officer. Provided, however, a taxicab driver shall be allowed 24 hours to produce the registration card before a conviction can be obtained under this provision, said registration to have been legally issued at a time prior to his or her arrest.

5719g. Sec. 181g. Number and Registration Plates to be Furnished by the Department:--(a) The Department shall also furnish for each vehicle registered as a taxicab at least one number plate. The Department shall also furnish taxicab registration plates as hereinafter provided. Upon the termination of the lawful use of any such plates, they shall be returned to the Department.

(b) The number plate or plates shall have displayed thereon the taxicab registration number assigned to the vehicle, the name of this State, which may be abbreviated. Each number plate shall bear a distinctive word, letter or marking which shall be designated by the Department for the purpose of identifying taxicabs. The said number plate for each vehicle shall also show, in the manner determined by the Department and as hereinafter provided, the period or expiration thereof for which the vehicle has been registered and the required registration fee paid. Upon the transfer of a vehicle or upon the expiration of registration for any other cause, the number plates assigned to a vehicle shall remain attached thereto.

(c) Such number plates shall be of such design, size, material and colors as the Department may determine and at least one thereof shall be so constructed that registration plates, to be furnished by the Department as provided in this Section, may be conveniently attached or affixed thereto and, when necessary, detached and removed therefrom.

(d) The Department shall furnish for each vehicle registered and upon the payment of the required fees, a registration plate to be attached or affixed to the number plate or plates as provided by sub-section (c) hereof. Such registration plates shall be of such design, size, material and color and shall bear such legend or inscription as the Department may determine, showing the period or expiration date thereof, which expiration date shall be as provided in 5719k. Sec. 181k. of this Chapter.

(e) There may also be attached to any number plate an additional removable plate of a size and design approved by the Department, which additional plate may show such other data as the Department may approve, provided, however, that no number plate shall have attached thereto any advertising matter, any fictitious numbers, signs or symbols, or any legend of any character, not approved by the Department.

*(* So enrolled) (h) It shall be unlawful for any person to use or exhibit in a manner or at a time not authorized by this Section, or by the rules and regulations of the Department with respect thereto, any number or registration plates, or accessory plates, or to display or use any unauthorized design, symbol or legend on or attached to any such plates.

5719h. Sec. 181h. Display of Plates:--(a) Number plate or plates assigned to a taxicab shall at all times be attached thereto.

(b) Every number plate or plates shall at all times be securely fastened to the vehicle to which it is assigned so as to prevent the plate or plates from swinging and at a height not less than twelve (12) inches from the ground, measuring from the bottom of such plate or plates, in a place or position to be clearly visible, and shall be maintained free from foreign materials and in a condition to be clearly legible.

5719i. Sec. 181i. Distinguishing Marking of Taxicab:--Every motor vehicle which is at any time used as a taxicab or which is intended to be used as a taxicab on any highway shall have painted thereupon in distinctive color and shall at all times bear the word "TAXI", in letters having height of at least four inches and a width of at least one inch; said word shall appear on the front and rear of the body of said taxicab and shall be so located that it shall be plainly visible from a height of four feet.

5719j. Sec. 181j. Registration Period and Renewal:--(a) A taxicab shall be registered for a period of six (6) months and the effective date of any registration shall be considered the first day of the calendar quarter in which the vehicle is registered and the required fees paid, provided, however, that any time prior to the expiration of the period for which a vehicle is registered, the registration thereof may be renewed to extend from the date of expiration for an additional period of six (6) months and in such event the effective date of the renewed registration shall be considered the first day of the calendar quarter following the period for which the taxicab is currently registered.

(e) A renewal registration of a taxicab for an additional period to take effect at the expiration' of the registration thereof may be cancelled on application to the Commissioner at any time before said renewal registration is to take effect, and thereupon the vehicle commissioner shall refund to said owner the registration fee so paid for such renewal registration upon the receipt for cancellation by the said commissioner for any such renewal taxicab registration card and/or taxicab registration plate issued pursuant to such renewal and otherwise cancel any endorsement of such renewal entered on the original card.

(f) Upon registering a taxicab the Department shall furnish a registration plate as provided by 5719g. Sec. 181g. of this Chapter, and upon renewing the registration of any taxicab or upon re-registering any taxicab, the Department shall furnish a new registration plate showing the new registration period or the expiration date thereof and shall issue a new registration card or appropriately endorse the new registration period on the original card.

(g) The registration of a taxicab shall expire at midnight on the last day of the period for which it is registered and the vehicle shall not thereafter be operated upon the highways of this State until it has been re-registered according to law, provided, however, that the provisions of this paragraph shall not apply to the operation of vehicles under temporary or limited permits or certificates as otherwise provided by this Chapter.

5719k. Sec. 181k. Expiration of Registration and Cancellation of Title: - (a) Whenever the owner of a taxicab registered under the provisions of this Act, transfers or assigns his title

or interest thereto, the registration of such vehicle shall expire.

(b) An owner upon transferring a registered taxicab shall endorse the name and address of the transferee and the date of transfer upon the taxicab registration card issued for such vehicle and shall immediately give or send such card to the Department or an authorized representative thereof, except as provided by subparagraph (d) of this Section.

() The transferee before operating or permitting the operation of such taxicab upon a highway, shall apply for a transfer of title, shall obtain the registration of the vehicle, as upon original registration, shall submit the vehicle to inspection and shall obtain new registration plates as provided in this Chapter, provided, however, the transferee may, before operating or permitting the operation of such vehicle upon a highway, apply for and obtain, upon the payment of a fee of One Dollar ($1.00), a transfer of title and taxicab registration and upon any such application the Department shall issue to the transferee without additional fee or inspection a new certificate of title and a new taxicab registration card which card shall show the same period for which such vehicle was originally registered as a taxicab by the owner and thereafter the transferee may operate such taxicab for the remainder of the period for which it was originally registered and the same taxicab registration plate shall remain affixed to the number plate of such vehicle.

The provisions of this paragraph shall not apply to the operation of vehicles, as provided under subparagraph (d) of this Section, or under temporary or limited permits or certificates as otherwise provided by this Article.

(a) If the transferee be a dealer the owner upon transferring a registered taxicab shall properly endorse the taxicab registration card and deliver it together with the certificate of title properly assigned to the dealer who shall immediately report such transfer to the Department and after reporting such transfer the dealer may operate such vehicle upon the highways during the period for which it is currently registered without dealer's plates, solely for the purposes of testing, demonstrating or selling the same, but upon the sale of such vehicle the deiler shall endorse the name and address of the purchaser and the date of transfer upon the said registration card and shall immediately give or send said card to the Department or an authorized representative thereof and the purchaser or transferee of the dealer shall before operating or permitting the operation of such vehicle upon a highway, comply with the provisions of subparagraph (c) of this Section.

(e) Whenever any person, firm or corporation carrying on the business of wrecking or dismantling motor vehicles for resale of parts thereof, shall purchase or otherwise acquire any such taxicab, whether registered or unregistered, for the sole purpose of wrecking or dismantling the same in order to resell the parts thereof, the owner upon transferring any such taxicab shall, in addition to forwarding to the Department the registration card issued for such taxicab as provided by subparagraph (b) of this Section, remove the number plates, and if the vehicle is registered. the registration plates, therefrom, and shall immediately give or send such plates and registration card to the Department or an authorized representative thereof, together with a report that the transferee of such vehicle acquired the same for the sole purpose of wrecking or dismantling such vehicle in order to resell the parts thereof. The said report shall contain the name and address of such transferee and the date of transfer. If the Department is satisfied that the transferee acquired such vehicle for the purpose aforesaid, the title to such vehicle shall be cancelled by the Department and such vehicle shall not thereafter be re-titled or registered in this State.

(f) In the event of the transfer by operation of law of the title or interest of an owner in and to a taxicab as upon inheritance, devise, or bequest, order in bankruptcy, or insolvency, or execution sale, the registration thereof shall expire and the vehicle shall not be operated upon the highways until and unless the person entitled thereto shall apply for and obtain the registration and inspection thereof, and a transfer of title therefor, except that the widower or widow, the child or children of any deceased person, and the immediate members of the deceased's family, residing in the household, after giving due and proper notice to the Department in such manner and on such form as may be provided therefor by the Department, may operate such taxicab and the current taxicab registration thereof shall continue in full force and effect until normal expiration thereof at which time the registration of such taxicab shall expire; and excepting further than an administrator, executor, trustee or other representative of the owner, or a sheriff or other officer, or the assignee or legal representative of any such person may operate or cause to be operated any vehicle upon the highways for a distance not exceeding one hundred twenty-five (125) miles from the place where formerly kept by the owner, to a garage, warehouse or other place of keeping or storage, upon displaying upon such vehicle the number plates issued for it and obtaining a temporary or limited permit for such operation as provided by this Article.

(g) Whenever any taxicab for which a title has been issued by the Department, and whether such taxicab be registered or unregistered, shall be removed from this State, whether through transfer or otherwise, for the purpose of retitling the same in another State, the owner thereof, upon transferring and/or removing such vehicle for the purpose aforesaid, shall, in addition to complying with all the other provisions of this Section, remove the taxicab number plate, and if the vehicle is registered as a taxicab, the taxicab registration plate, therefrom, and shall immediately give or send such plate to the Department or an authorized representative thereof, together with a report that such vehicle is to be re-titled in another State. If the Department is satisfied that such taxicab is to be removed from this State for the purpose aforesaid, the title to such taxicab shall be cancelled and the Department shall pay the sum of Fifty cents ($.50) per plate for each number plate returned to the Department in accordance with the provisions of this sub-paragraph, and said Department shall also refund unto the owner thereof who complies with the provisions of this Section the pro-rata proportion of the registration fees for the unexpired period for which said taxicab was so registered.

5719-1. Sec. 181-1. Lost Certificates or Taxi Number Plates; Duplicate to be Obtained:--In the event that any taxicab number plate or taxicab registration card issued hereunder shall be lost, mutilated or shall have become illegible, the person who is entitled thereto shall make immediate application for and obtain a duplicate or substitute therefor upon furnishing information of such fact satisfactory to the Department and upon payment of the required fee.

5719m. Sec. 181m. Department to Suspend Registration Upon Notice of Theft or Embezzlement:--Whenever the owner of any taxicab which has been stolen or embezzled shall file an affidavit of the fact thereof with the Department, the Department shall forthwith suspend the registration of such taxicab and shall not transfer the title of or re-register the same until it has been notified that the owner has recovered such taxicab. Notice given as herein provided shall be effective for the current registration period, but if during that time such vehicle is not recovered a new affidavit to like effect may be filed with the Department and such notice shall be effective for a further period of twelve (12) months. Thereafter like notices may be given effective from year to year thereafter. Every owner who has filed an affidavit of theft or embezzlement, shall immediately notify the Department of the recovery of such vehicle and upon failure so to do within thirty (30) days after such recovery shall be punished as provided in Section 210. of this Chapter.

5719n. Sec. 181n. When Registration Shall be Refused:--The Department shall not grant an application for the registration of a taxicab in any of the following events:

(a) When the applicant is not entitled thereto under the provisions of this Act.

(b) When the applicant has neglected or refused to furnish the Department with the information required in the appropriate official form or to give reasonable additional information required by the Department.

(c) When fees required therefor by law have not been paid.

(d) When the vehicle is in an unsafe and unfit condition to be operated upon the highways of this State and when it is not equipped in the manner provided by law.

(e) When it does not appear to the satisfaction of the Commissioner that financial ability required by Section 182 has been established.

5719o. Sec. 181o. Inspection, Recision or Suspension of Registration:--(a) The Department shall provide and maintain one or more places in each county of the State, together with such facilities and such number of qualified inspectors as may be required for taxicab registration purposes. The inspection herein provided shall be for the purpose of determining whether such vehicle is in a safe and fit condition to be operated upon the highways of the State, and whether it is equipped in the manner provided by law.

(b) Before the Department shall register, renew the registration of or re-register a taxicab required to be registered under the provisions of this Act, such taxicab shall first be inspected by the Department and determined to be safe and fit for operation and found equipped according to law, provided, however, the Department may waive the inspection requirement of this paragraph with respect to the registration of new motor vehicles.

(c) At any time and notwithstanding the possession of current registration plate, as provided by this Act, the Motor Vehicle Commissioner, or any authorized agent of the Department, or any State Police Officer may, upon reasonable cause, require the owner or operator of a taxicab to stop and submit such taxicab and the equipment to such further inspection and test with reference thereto as may be appropriate. In the event such taxicab is found to be in an unsafe condition or lacking the required equipment, or is not in proper repair and adjustment, the officer shall give a written notice to the driver and shall send a copy thereof to the Department, said notice shall require that such taxicab and its equipment be placed in safe condition and in proper repair and adjustment and/or that proper equipment be obtained, and that certificate of inspection and approval for such taxicab be obtained within five (5) days thereafter.

(d) Every owner or 'driver upon receiving any such notice shall comply therewith and shall within said five (5) days secure an endorsement upon such notice by an inspector of the Department that such taxicab is in safe condition, and properly equipped, and its equipment in proper repair and adjustment, and shall then forward said notice to the Department; provided, however, no person shall operate any such taxicab after receiving a notice with reference thereto as above provided, except as may be necessary to return such vehicle to the residence or the place of business of the owner or driver if within a distance of twenty (20) miles, or to a garage, until said vehicle and its equipment has been placed in proper repair and adjustment and otherwise made to conform to the requirements of this Chapter.

(e) The Department shall rescind, cancel or suspend the registration of a taxicab whenever the person, to whom the registration card or registration or number plate therefor have been issue, shall make or permit to be made any unlawful use of the said card or said plate, or permit the use thereof by a person not entitled thereto.

(f) The Department shall rescind, cancel or suspend the registration of any taxicab if it shall be determined by the said Department that such taxicab should not have been registered in the State of Delaware, or that the person to whom the taxicab registration card or taxicab registration or taxicab number plates therefor have been issued is not the owner of the vehicle or that such person shall have made or permitted to be made illegal use of said motor vehicle or, if when such vehicle being registered only as a taxicab such person shall have made or permitted such vehicle to be used other than in transporting a person or persons for hire in the accommodation of the public; provided an appeal may be taken by the said persons from any such decision of said Department, to the Superior Court of the County wherein the said registrant resides.

(g) The Department shall rescind, cancel or suspend the registration of any taxicab and shall rescind, cancel or suspend, and shall take up, the current registration plates of any taxicab which shall be determined by said Department at any time, upon inspection in pursuance of the provisions of this Section to be unsafe or unfit to be operated, or to be not equipped as required by law.

5719p. Sec. 181p. Violations of Registration Provision: --It shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to commit any of the following acts:

(a) To operate, or for the owner thereof knowingly to permit the operation upon a highway of any taxicab which is not registered as a taxicab or which does not have attached thereto and displayed thereon the taxicab number plate assigned thereto by the Department, and unexpired taxicab registration plate or under temporary or limited permits as otherwise provided by this Act or which does not bear the word "Taxi" as provided in 5719i. Sec. 181i.

(b) To display, or cause or permit to be displayed, or to have in possession, any taxicab registration card, taxicab number plate, or taxicab registration plate, knowing the same to be fictitious or to have been cancelled, revoked, suspended or altered.

(c) To fend to, or knowingly to permit the use by one not entitled thereto, any taxicab registration card, taxicab number plate, or taxicab registration plate, issued to the person so lending or permitting the use thereof.

(d) To fail, or refuse to surrender to the Department upon demand, any taxicab registration card taxicab number plate or taxicab registration plate, which has been suspended, cancelled or revoked as provided in this Act.

(e) To use a false or fictitious name or address in any application for the registration or inspection of any taxicab or for any renewal or duplicate thereof, or for any certificate or transfer of title, or knowingly to make a false statement, or knowingly to conceal a material fact, or otherwise commit a fraud in any such application.

(f) To drive or move, or for the owner to cause or knowingly to permit to be driven or moved on any highway, any vehicle or combination of vehicles, which is in such unsafe condition as to endanger any person, or which is equipped in any manner in violation of this Chapter; provided, however, the provisions of this Chapter with respect to equipment on vehicles shall not apply to implements of husbandry, road machinery, road rollers, or farm tractors; except as herein made applicable.

(g) To do any act forbidden or fail to perform any act required under this Chapter.

5719q. Sec. 181q. Registration, Title and Other Fees; Contingent Fund for Refund of Renewal Registration Fees:--(a) There shall be paid to the Department for the registration of motor vehicles as taxicabs the registration and title fees as provided by this Section.

(b) At the time of application for the registration of a motor vehicle as a taxicab, and prior to the issuance of the current registration plates required by this Article, there shall be paid to the Department registration fees according to the following schedule:

(1) For the registration of each motor vehicle as a taxicab as follows: Five Dollars for any such motor vehicle having a gross load weight of four thousand (4000) pounds or less; Seven Dollars for any such motor vehicle having a gross load weight of more than four thousand (4000) pounds. The gross load weight of any motor vehicle covered by this paragraph shall be the weight of the vehicle, exclusive of passengers, as specified in the application.

(c) The registration fees for vehicles provided by this Section shall be for a period of six (6) months as provided by 5719j. Sec. 181j. of this Act.

(d) Number and registration plates shall be the property of the State of Delaware and shall be furnished by the Department for each registered taxicab without additional cost to the owner, provided, however, that whenever number or registration plates shall be lost, destroyed or effaced in such a manner as not to comply with the provisions of 5719f. Sec. 181f. of this Act new plates shall be furnished by the Department, and the owner shall pay to the Department the sum of One Dollar ($1.00) for each plate so furnished. The Department shall pay the sum of Fifty Cents ($.50) per plate for each number plate returned to the Department in accordance with the provisions of 5719k. Sec. 181k. sub-paragraph (e) of this Act.

(e) The fee for issuing a Certificate of Title or transferring a title to a taxicab shall be One Dollar ($1.00).

(f) The fee for duplicates of certificates of title, certificates of registration or other certificates or permits relating to motor vehicles shall be Fifty Cents ($.50).

(g) The fee for temporary or limited permits shall be One Dollar ($1.00) each.

(h) The Department shall retain out of the revenue collected by it a sum sufficient to provide at all times a contingent fund of One Thousand Dollars ($1,000.00) out of which it shall pay any refunds for renewal registration fees provided for in 5719q. Sec. 181q. of this Chapter; said funds shall be deposited in the financial institution which is the legal depository of the State moneys and shall be disbursable on order of the Motor Vehicle Commissioner.

5719r. Sec. 181r. Taxicab Drivers Must Be Licensed:--No person shall drive upon any highway of this State any taxicab unless such person upon application has been licensed as a taxicab operator by the Department under the provisions of this Chapter.

5719s. Sec. 181s. What Persons Shall Not be Licensed:--(a) No taxicab. driver's license shall be issued to any person under the age of twenty-one years.

(b) The Department shall not issue a taxicab driver's license to any person whose license, as operator, chauffeur, or taxicab driver has been suspended during the period for which license was suspended; nor to any person whose license, as operator, chauffeur, or taxicab driver has been revoked under the provisions of this Chapter until the expiration of one year after such license was revoked.

(c) The Department shall not issue a taxicab driver's license to any person who it has determined is a habitual drunkard or is addicted to the use of narcotic drugs.

(d) No taxicab driver's license shall be issued to any applicant who has previously been adjudged insane or an idiot, imbecile, epileptic, or feeble-minded, and who has not at the time of such application been restored to competency by judicial decree or released from a hospital for the insane or feebleminded upon a certificate of the superintendent that such person is competent, nor then Unless the Department is satisfied that such person is competent to operate a motor vehicle with safety to persons and property.

() The Department shall not issue a taxicab driver's license to any person when in the opinion of the Department such person is afflicted with or suffering from, such physical or mental disability or disease as will serve to prevent such person from exercising reasonable and ordinary control over a motor vehicle while operating the same upon the highways, nor shall a license be issued to any person who is unable to understand highway warning or direction signs in the English language.

5719t. Sec. 181t. Application for Taxicab Driver's License; What Application Shall Contain; Notary Fees:--(a) Every application for taxicab driver's license shall be made on forms furnished by the Department. The applicant shall permit his fingerprints to be taken and shall submit a photograph of the size and type to be designated by the Department. The original application shall be verified by the applicant before a person authorized to administer oaths.

(b) Every application shall state the name, age, sex, and residence address of the applicant, and whether or not the applicant has heretofore been licensed as an operator or chauffeur and if so when and by what State, and whether or not such license has ever been suspended or revoked and if so the date of and reason for such suspension or revocation.

(c) Notaries' Public Fees for administering and certifying, under hand and notarial seal, the necessary oaths or affirmations to an applicant for the registration and titling of a motor vehicle and the necessary operator's license shall not exceed Fifty Cents for the first certification and Twenty-five Cents for each additional certification.

Any Notary Public charging, demanding or receiving a greater fee for the service herein specified, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, be fined a sum not greater than Two Hundred Dollars or imprisoned for a period not longer than six months in the discretion of the Court.

(d) Upon receipt of the application and a fee of One Dollar ($1.00) and after such examination as herein provided, the Motor Vehicle Commissioner of this State may issue, at his discretion, a taxicab driver's license which shall be known as an annual operator's or chauffeur's license and which shall expire on the May 31 next succeeding the date of its issuance.

5719u. Sec. 181u. Examination of Applicants; Examination Every Year:--(a) The Department shall examine every applicant for taxicab driver's license before issuing any such license, and the Department shall before granting a renewal of such license re-examine every holder of such license, except as otherwise provided in subdivision (b) of this Section. The Department shall examine the applicant as to his physical and mental qualifications to operate a motor vehicle in such manner as not to jeopardize the safety of persons or property and as to whether any facts exist which would bar the issuance of a license under Section 54. of this Chapter, but such examination shall not include investigation of any facts other than those directly pertaining to the ability of the applicant to operate a motor vehicle with safety, or other than those facts declared to be prerequisite to the issuance of a license under this Chapter.

(e) The Department may in its discretion waive the examination of any person applying for the renewal of a taxicab driver's license issued under this Chapter.

(f) The Department shall cause a special examination to be made of every person involved in a second accident resulting in personal injury, death or property damage to an apparent extent of One Hundred Dollars ($100.00) or more within any 24-month period to determine any physical or mental impediment to the safe operation of a vehicle as a pre-requisite to the continuation of the operator's right to drive on the highways. The Department shall also cause to be examined any person whom the State Police Superintendent or the Chief of Police of the City of Wilmington recommends for such examination.

(g) The Department, for sufficient reasons, shall have authority to refuse to issue any form of license or permit to any applicant or to revoke any such license by the said Department heretofore issued. Provided, however, that upon such refusal or revocation, such applicant shall have a right of appeal to the Court of General Sessions of the County in which he resides, but in the case of revocations such appeal shall not operate as a stay.

() Examinations of applicants shall be performed by examiners appointed and designated under 5598. Sec. 60. of the Revised Code.

5719v. Sec. 181v. Register of Taxicab Drivers:--The Department shall file every application for a taxicab driver's license and index the same by name and number and maintain suitable records of all licenses issued and all applications for licenses denied, also a record of all licenses which have been suspended or revoked.

5719w. Sec. 181w. Licenses Issued to Taxicab Drivers:--(a) The Department shall issue to every person licensed as a taxicab driver a "Taxicab Driver's License". Any person licensed as a taxicab driver under this Chapter shall not be required to procure a chauffeur's or an operator's license.

(b) Every such license shall bear thereon the distinguishing number assigned to the licensee and shall contain the name, age, residence, address and a brief description of the licensee for the purpose of identification, also a space for the signature of the licensee, and shall bear thereon a photograph of the licensee.

5719x. Sec. 181x. Duplicate License Certificates:--In the event that a taxicab driver's license issued under the provisions of this Chapter shall be lost or destroyed, the person to whom the same was issued may obtain a duplicate or substitute thereof upon furnishing proof satisfactory to the Department that such license has been lost or destroyed and upon payment of the fees required by law.

5719y. Sec. 181y. License to be Signed and Carried:--(a) Every person licensed as a taxicab driver shall write his usual signature with pen and ink across the face of the photograph on the license certificate issued to him immediately upon receipt of such certificate, and such license shall not be valid until the certificate is so signed.

(b) The licensee shall at all times when driving a motor vehicle display the same in a place visible to passengers in such taxicab.

5719z. Sec. 181z. Expiration of License:--Every taxicab driver's license issued hereunder shall expire on May 31 of each year and shall be renewed annually upon application and payment of the fees required by law, such renewal to take effect on the first day of June in each year; provided that the Department, in its discretion, may waive the examination of any such applicant previously licensed under this Chapter.

5719aa. Sec. 181aa. Court to Report Convictions and May Recommend Suspension of Licenses:--Every court and police officer having jurisdiction over offenses committed under this Chapter, or any other law of this State, regulating the operation of motor vehicles on highways, shall forward to the Department a record of the conviction of any person in said court for a violation of any said laws, and may recommend the suspension of the taxicab driver's 'license of the person so convicted, and the Department shall thereupon consider and act upon such recommendation in such manner as may seem to it best.

5719bb. Sec. 181bb. Mandatory Suspension or Revocation of License by Department:--(a) The Department shall forthwith revoke the license of any person upon receiving a record of the conviction of such person of any of the following crimes:

1. Manslaughter resulting from the operation of a motor vehicle.

2. The crime of assault in which a motor vehicle is used and the death of a human being results.

3. Driving a vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating liquor or narcotic drug.

4. Perjury or the making of a false affidavit to the Department under this Chapter or any other Law of this State requiring the registration of motor vehicles or regulating their operation on highways.

5. Any crime punishable as a felony under the motor vehicle Laws of this State or any other felony in the commission of which a motor vehicle is used.

6. Conviction or forfeiture of bail upon three charges of reckless driving all within the preceding twelve months.

7. A conviction of a driver of a motor vehicle, involved in an accident resulting in the death or injury of another person, upon a charge of failing to stop, and disclose his identity at the scene of the accident.

(b) The Department upon receiving a re-cord of the conviction of any person upon a charge of operating a motor vehicle while the license of such person is suspended or revoked, shall immediately extend the period of such first suspension or revocation for an additional like period.

5719cc. Sec. 181cc. Department May Suspend or Revoke License:--(a) The Department may immediately suspend the license of any person without hearing and without receiving a record of conviction of such person of crime whenever the Department has reason to believe:

1. That such person has committed any offense for the conviction of which mandatory revocation of license is provided in Section 67 of this Chapter.

2. That such person has, by reckless or unlawful operation of a motor vehicle, caused or contributed to an accident resulting in death or injury to any other person or serious property damage.

3. That such person is incompetent to drive a motor vehicle or is afflicted with mental or physical infirmities or disabilities rendering it unsafe for such person to drive a motor vehicle upon the highways.

4. That such person is an habitual reckless or negligent driver of a motor vehicle or has committed a serious violation of the motor vehicle laws of this State.

5. That such person has violated the provisions of the "Second" paragraph of Section 73 of this Chapter.

Whenever the Department suspends the license of any person for any reason set forth in the above five paragraphs, the Department shall immediately notify the licensee and afford him an opportunity of a hearing before said Department in the county wherein the licensee resides, and upon such hearing the Department shall either rescind its order of suspension or, good cause appearing therefor, may suspend the license of such person for a further period or revoke said license.

(b) The Department is hereby authorized to suspend or revoke the license of any resident of this State upon receiving notice of the conviction of such person in another State of an offense therein which, if committed in this State, would be grounds for the suspension or revocation of the license of a taxicab driver. The Department is further authorized, upon receiving a record of the conviction in this State of *a non-resident driver of a motor vehicle of any offense under the motor vehicle laws of this State, to forward a certified copy of such record to the Motor Vehicle Administrator in the State wherei4 the person so convicted is a resident.

(c) The Department shall not suspend a license for a period of more than one year and upon suspending or revoking any license shall require that such license of a taxicab driver whose license is so suspended or revoked shall be surrendered to and retained by the Department except that at the end of a period of suspension such license so surrendered shall be returned to the licensee.

5719dd. Sec. 181dd. Right of Appeal to Court:--Any person denied a license or whose license has been revoked by the Department, except where such revocation is mandatory under the provisions of this Chapter, shall have the right to an appeal to the Superior Court in the county wherein such person shall reside and such court is hereby vested with jurisdiction to hear and, determine the matter.

5719ee. Sec. 181ee. Violation of Taxicab License Provisions:--It shall be unlawful for any person to commit any of the following acts:

First. To display or cause or permit to be displayed or to have in possession any taxicab driver's license knowing the same to be fictitious or to have been cancelled, revoked, suspended or altered;

Second. To lend to, or knowingly permit the use of, by one not entitled thereto any taxicab driver's license issued to the person so lending or permitting the use thereof;

Third. To display, or to represent as one's own, any taxicab driver's license not issued to the person so displaying the same;

Fourth. To fail or refuse to surrender to the Department upon demand, any taxicab, driver's license which has been suspended, cancelled or revoked as provided by law;

Fifth. To use a false or fictitious name or give a false or fictitious address in any application for a taxicab driver's license, or any renewal or duplicate thereof, or knowingly to make a false statement or knowingly to conceal a material fact or otherwise commit a fraud in any such application or in any examination for a taxicab driver's license.

5719ff. Sec. 181ff. Making False Affidavit, Perjury; Penalty:--Any person who shall make any false affidavit or shall knowingly swear or affirm falsely, to any matter or thing required by the terms of Article 10 of this Chapter to be sworn to or affirmed, shall be guilty of perjury and upon conviction shall be punishable by fine or imprisonment as other persons committing perjury are punishable.

5719gg. Sec. 181gg. Unlawful to Drive While License Suspended or Revoked; Misdemeanor; Penalty:--Any person whose taxicab driver's license has been suspended or revoked, as provided in this Chapter, and who shall drive any motor vehicle upon the highways of this State while such license is suspended or revoked, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be punished by a fine of not less than Fifty Dollars nor more than Two Hundred Dollars, or by imprisonment for not less than thirty days nor more than six months or by both such fine and imprisonment, and shall be punished for each like subsequent offense by a fine of not less than One Hundred Dollars nor more than Two Hundred Dollars, or by imprisonment for not less than ninety days nor more than six months, or by both such fine and imprisonment.

5719hh. Sec. 181hh. Penalty for Violation of Article 10: --(a) It shall be unlawful and constitute a misdemeanor for any person to violate any of the provisions of Article 10 of this Chapter, unless such violation is by this Chapter or other law of this State declared to be a felony.

(d) Every person convicted of a misdemeanor for the violation of any of the provisions of Section 181 through 181p., inclusive, of this Chapter except such person as shall have been convicted of a violation of the provisions of subsection (b) of Section 181h. shall be punished for the first offense by a fine of not less than Twenty-five Dollars ($25.00) nor more than One Hundred Dollars ($100.00) or by imprisonment for not less than thirty (30) days, nor more than ninety (90) days, or by both such fine and imprisonment and shall be punished for each subsequent like offense by a fine of not less than One Hundred Dollars ($100.00) nor more than Two Hundred Dollars ($200.00) or by imprisonment for not less than ninety (90) days nor more than six (6) months, or by both such fine and imprisonment.

(e) Every person who shall have been convicted of a violation of the provisions of subdivision (b) of Section 181h. of this Chapter shall be punished by a fine of not less than Five Dollars ($5.00) nor more than Twenty-five Dollars ($25.00).

(f) Every person convicted of a misdemeanor for the violation of any of the provisions of Sections 181r. through 181gg., inclusive, of this Chapter shall be punished for the first such offense by a fine of not less than Ten Dollars ($10.00) nor more than One Hundred Dollars ($100.00), or by imprisonment for not less than 5 days nor more than 30 days, or by both such fine and imprisonment, and shall be punished for each subsequent like offense by a fine of not less than Twenty-five Dollars ($25.00) nor more than Two Hundred Dollars ($200.00), or by imprisonment for not less than 10 days nor more than 60 days, or by both such fine and imprisonment.

Section 2. That Chapter 165 of the Revised Code of Delaware, 1935, as amended, be and the same is hereby further amended by adding a new paragraph to 5539. Sec. 1. thereof, to be known and styled as paragraph (ii) as follows:

(ii) "Taxicab":--Every motor vehicle, except buses, trackless trolley coaches and vehicles used on stationary rails or tracks, which is used, is intended to be used, or which has within six months been used, on any occasion in transporting a person or persons for hire in the accommodation of the public, except any taxicab having proper current registration in another State which does not and is not intended to take on or discharge, and which has not within six months taken on or discharged, for hire in the general accommodation of the public, on any occasion any person within the State of Delaware.

Approved April 10, 1947.