Chapter 216
2015 -- S 0697 SUBSTITUTE A
Enacted 07/10/2015

A N   A C T

Introduced By: Senators Pearson, Crowley, Picard, and Archambault
Date Introduced: March 18, 2015

It is enacted by the General Assembly as follows:
     SECTION 1. Sections 39-14.1-1 and 39-14.1-6 of the General Laws in Chapter 39-14.1
entitled "Public Motor Vehicles" are hereby amended to read as follows:
     39-14.1-1. Definitions. -- Terms used in this chapter shall be construed as follows, unless
another meaning is expressed or is clearly apparent from the language or context:
      (1) "Certificate" means a certificate of operating authority issued to a public motor
      (2) "Charter carrier" means a provider of transportation services to groups such as:
lodges, bands, athletic teams, schools schools, or other travel groups, assembled by someone
other than the carrier who collectively contracts for the exclusive use of certain equipment for the
duration of a particular trip or tour. Charter carrier services shall also include transportation
services provided by employment agencies or employers to individuals in the context of
providing transportation to and from their place of employment;
      (3) "Common carrier" “Common carrier”, as used in this chapter, means any person
engaging in the business of providing transportation services for compensation to passengers
through the use of a public motor vehicle as defined in this chapter;
      (4) "Division" means the division of public utilities and carriers;
      (5) "Driver" means any person operating a motor vehicle used for the transportation of
passengers which that he or she owns or is operating with the expressed or implied consent of
the owner;
      (6) "Person" means and includes any individual, partnership, corporation, or other
association of individuals;
      (7) "Public motor vehicle" means and includes every motor vehicle for hire, other than a
jitney, as defined in § 39-13-1, or a taxicab or limited public motor vehicle, as defined in § 39-14-
1, used for transporting members of the general public for compensation in unmarked vehicles at
a predetermined or prearranged charge to such points as may be directed by the passenger. All
vehicles operated under this chapter shall conform to specifications established by the division.
Transportation services provided by charter carriers, as defined in this chapter, or by funeral
homes homes, in association with funeral services, and by ambulance companies shall be exempt
from this chapter;
      (8) "Unmarked vehicles" means motor vehicles that do not display the transportation
company's name, address or telephone number, or any advertisements or commercial information
beyond that included by the vehicle's manufacturer on the vehicle's exterior surfaces; provided,
however, that public motor vehicles that display markings identifying them as service or courtesy
vehicles used by licensed health care facilities, assisted living residences, and adult day care
programs, licensed by the department of health, pursuant to chapters 17 and 17.4 of title 23 and
§ 23-1-52, respectively, shall be permitted to operate with such markings; provided the vehicles
are registered to these licensed entities; operated by employees of these licensed entities; and
that the service provided with these vehicles, when being used as public motor vehicles, is
limited to transportation services provided to passengers receiving transportation services through
a program funded by the federal government and/or the state of Rhode Island; provided, further,
that public motor vehicles providing transportation services under a program funded by the
federal government and/or the state of Rhode Island may display temporary and easily removable
markings (e.g., magnetic placards) on their vehicles for the sole purpose of identifying the
vehicles as authorized transportation service vehicles operating in association with the publicly
funded program.
      (9) "Wheelchair accessible public motor vehicle" means a public motor vehicle designed
and equipped to allow the transportation of a person(s) who uses a wheelchair without requiring
that person(s) to be removed from the wheelchair, but such public motor vehicle is not restricted
to transporting only persons using wheelchairs.
     39-14.1-6. Operations of public motor vehicles. -- No public motor vehicle shall be
operated from any taxicab stand on any public highway; nor shall the operator of it transport any
passenger for hire unless the transportation is requested by the passenger at an office of the owner
of the vehicle, either personally or by telephone and/or other electronic means. When solicited by
a prospective customer customer, the certificate holder or its representative shall quote what the
actual charge for the requested transportation service will be prior to picking up the passenger(s).
      The division shall establish and set a minimum allowable charge for public motor
vehicle services. The minimum allowable charge provisions of this section shall not apply to
public motor vehicle service coordinated by by, or paid for by by, a state department, authority
authority, or agency on behalf of clients of said state department, authority authority, or
agency; provided, however, that the state department, authority authority, or agency requests
the service no later than the day before the service is to be rendered. This exemption shall also
apply in cases where the state has contracted with a private company to coordinate the scheduling
and provision of such transportation services, provided the funding for such transportation
services comes exclusively through a program funded by the federal government and/or the state
of Rhode Island.
     SECTION 3. This act shall take effect upon passage.
LC002116/SUB A