2017 - 2018 LEGISLATURE
February 5, 2018 - Introduced by Representatives Knodl, Tusler, Hutton and
Duchow, cosponsored by Senator Nass. Referred to Committee on Regulatory
1An Act to repeal
194.41 (6) (b) 2. and 349.24; to renumber
194.41 (6) (b) 1., 2
subchapter IV (title) of chapter 440 [precedes 440.40], 440.41, 440.42, 440.425, 3
440.43, 440.435, 440.44, 440.445, 440.45, 440.455, 440.46, 440.48 and 440.495; 4to renumber and amend
440.40, 440.415, 440.465 and 440.49; to amend
121.53 (5) (c), 194.01 (1), 194.01 (2), 340.01 (23g) (b) 4., 346.935 (4) (b) and 6
440.03 (9) (a) (intro.); and to create
440.08 (2) (a) 69., chapter 474 (title) and 7
subchapter I of chapter 474 [precedes 474.10] of the statutes; relating to:
8regulation of taxicab companies and taxicab dispatch services, extending the
9time limit for emergency rule procedures, providing an exemption from
10emergency rule procedures, granting rule-making authority, and providing a
Analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau
This bill eliminates the authority of local governments to regulate and license
operators of taxicabs and taxicab businesses and instead requires that taxicab
companies and taxicab dispatch services be licensed by the state.
Under current law, a common council of a city or a village or town board may
regulate and license chauffeurs and operators of taxicabs used for hire; may regulate
and license a taxicab business by licensing each taxicab used for hire; and may
prohibit any person from operating any motor vehicle for taxicab purposes upon the
highways of the city, village, or town unless the person is licensed as a chauffeur and
operator and unless the taxicab business is licensed by the licensing of each taxicab.
Subject to certain exceptions, this bill prohibits a city, village, town, or county from
enacting or enforcing an ordinance or from adopting or enforcing a resolution that
regulates a taxicab company or taxicab dispatch service or its drivers in connection
with taxicab services.
The bill instead provides that no person may own or operate a taxicab company
or taxicab dispatch service unless the taxicab company or dispatch service is licensed
by the Department of Safety and Professional Services. The bill also prohibits any
individual from operating a motor vehicle as a taxicab unless the taxicab is affiliated
with a licensed taxicab company or dispatch service. The bill exempts from the
licensure requirements individuals who operate taxicabs as employees of or
independent contractors for taxicab companies, as well as individuals who are
independent owner-operators of taxicabs affiliated with licensed taxicab dispatch
The bill requires DSPS to grant a license to an applicant for licensure as a
taxicab company or dispatch service if certain application requirements are
satisfied, including that the taxicab company or dispatch service pays an initial
licensure fee determined by DSPS using a sliding scale. A license entitles the license
holder to operate the taxicab company or dispatch service to provide trips to
passengers throughout the state, without geographic limitation.
The bill includes a number of requirements applicable to a licensed taxicab
company or dispatch service, including all of the following:
1. A taxicab dispatch service must disclose its fare calculation method and rates
on its Internet site. If a taxicab is not affiliated with a taxicab dispatch service, the
taxicab company must have the fare calculation method and rates for the taxicab
disclosed inside the taxicab.
2. A taxicab company or dispatch service must ensure that each taxicab is
equipped with a device that can calculate a passenger's fare in a location visible to
the passenger. A taxicab company or dispatch service may also, however, use a
digital network to calculate a passenger's fare and transmit that fare to the
passenger's mobile device.
3. In addition to other nondiscrimination and accessibility requirements, a
taxicab company or dispatch service must have in place a policy of nondiscrimination
on the basis of trip origin or destination, race, color, national origin, religious belief
or affiliation, sex, disability, age, sexual orientation, or gender identity with respect
to passengers and prospective passengers.
4. A taxicab company or dispatch service must have in place a “zero tolerance”
policy prohibiting drivers from using alcohol, or any other intoxicant that may render
the driver incapable of safely driving, while the driver is driving for the taxicab
company or dispatch service.
5. A taxicab company or dispatch service must ensure that each driver is
licensed to drive and is able to safely operate any vehicle to be used as a taxicab.
The bill requires each vehicle used as a taxicab to satisfy certain requirements,
including being marked as a taxi and marked with the name of the taxicab company
or dispatch service with which it is affiliated. The bill also specifies that the owner
of a vehicle used as a taxicab is required to satisfy the minimum requirements for
automobile insurance that apply to vehicle owners generally.
The bill authorizes DSPS to conduct investigations and hold hearings to
determine whether a violation of the bill's provisions, a related rule promulgated by
DSPS, or any other law that substantially relates to the operation of a taxicab
company or dispatch service has occurred. The bill further authorizes DSPS to
discipline a licensed taxicab company or dispatch service, and any person who
violates the bill's provisions or a related rule promulgated by DSPS may be subject
to a fine not to exceed $1,000.
For further information see the state and local fiscal estimate, which will be
printed as an appendix to this bill.
The people of the state of Wisconsin, represented in senate and assembly, do
enact as follows:
121.53 (5) (c) of the statutes is amended to read:
(c) A taxicab regulated by a municipal ordinance
under s. 349.24 3subch. I of ch. 474
when used to transport pupils.
194.01 (1) of the statutes is amended to read:
“Common motor carrier" means any person who holds himself or 6
herself out to the public as willing to undertake for hire to transport passengers or 7
property by motor vehicle upon the public highways. The transportation of 8
passengers in taxicab service or
in commuter car pool or van pool vehicles that are 9
designed to carry less than 8 passengers, including the driver, or in a school bus 10
under s. 120.13 (27) or in a motor vehicle being used to provide transportation 11
network services, as defined in s. 440.40 474.40
(7) or in taxicabs, as defined in s.
, is not transportation by a common motor carrier.
194.01 (2) of the statutes is amended to read:
“Contract motor carrier" means any person engaged in the 2
transportation by motor vehicle over a regular or irregular route upon the public 3
highways of property for hire, including the transportation of buildings, as defined 4
in s. 348.27 (12m) (a) 1. The transportation of property in a motor vehicle being used 5
subject to subch. IV of ch. 440 I or II of ch. 474
is not transportation by a contract 6
194.41 (6) (b) 1. of the statutes is renumbered 194.41 (6) (b).
194.41 (6) (b) 2. of the statutes is repealed.
340.01 (23g) (b) 4. of the statutes is amended to read:
(b) 4. A motor vehicle being used to provide transportation 11
network services, as defined in s. 440.40 474.40
346.935 (4) (b) of the statutes is amended to read:
(b) This section does not apply to passengers in a limousine or in 14
a motor bus who possess any bottle or receptacle containing alcohol beverages that 15
has been opened, on which the seal has been broken or the contents of which have 16
been partially removed or released if the vehicle is operated by a chauffeur holding 17
a valid license and endorsements authorizing operation of the vehicle as provided in 18
ch. 343 and is in compliance with any local ordinance or regulation adopted under
349.24 of the statutes is repealed.
440.03 (9) (a) (intro.) of the statutes is amended to read:
(a) (intro.) Subject to pars. (b) and (c) and s. 474.115 (4)
, the 23
department shall, biennially, determine each fee for an initial credential for which 24
no examination is required, for a reciprocal credential, and for a credential renewal 25
by doing all of the following:
440.08 (2) (a) 69. of the statutes is created to read:
(a) 69. Taxicab company or dispatch service: March 1 of each 3
Subchapter IV (title) of chapter 440 [precedes 440.40] of the 5
statutes is renumbered subchapter II (title) of chapter 474 [precedes 474.40].
440.40 of the statutes is renumbered 474.40, and 474.40 (2) and 7
(6), as renumbered, are amended to read:
“Licensed company" means a transportation network company that 9
is licensed under s. 440.415 474.415
“Transportation network company" means a business that, for 11
compensation, uses a digital network to connect passengers to participating drivers 12
for the purpose of providing transportation network services to those passengers. 13
“Transportation network company" does not include a taxicab
, company, as defined
14in s. 474.10 (4), a taxicab dispatch service, as defined in s. 474.10 (5), or a
shuttle, or other for-hire vehicle service.
440.41 of the statutes is renumbered 474.41.
440.415 of the statutes is renumbered 474.415, and 474.415 (1) (c), 18
as renumbered, is amended to read:
(c) The applicant demonstrates to the satisfaction of the 20
department that it satisfies all applicable requirements under ss.
21440.45, and 440.48 474.42, 474.44, 474.45, and 474.48
440.42 of the statutes is renumbered 474.42.
440.425 of the statutes is renumbered 474.425.
440.43 of the statutes is renumbered 474.43.
440.435 of the statutes is renumbered 474.435.