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SB-1376 Transportation network companies: accessibility for persons with disabilities.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 03/23/2018 04:00 AM
SB1376:v98#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Senate  March 22, 2018

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Senate Bill No. 1376


Introduced by Senator Hill

February 16, 2018


An act to amend Section 5440 of of, and to add Section 5440.5 to, the Public Utilities Code, relating to transportation.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


SB 1376, as amended, Hill. Transportation network companies: accessibility plans. for persons with disabilities.
The Passenger Charter-party Carriers’ Act defines a transportation network company as an organization, whether a corporation, partnership, sole proprietor, or other form, operating in California that provides prearranged transportation services for compensation using an online-enabled platform to connect passengers with drivers using their personal vehicles. The act also defines a participating driver or driver as any person who uses a vehicle in connection with a transportation network company’s online-enabled application or platform to connect with passengers.
Existing regulations of the Public Utilities Commission require a transportation network company to allow passengers to indicate whether they require a wheelchair-accessible vehicle or a vehicle otherwise accessible to individuals with disabilities and requires the transportation network company to submit a specified report to the Public Utilities Commission detailing the number and percentage of their customers who requested accessible vehicles and how often the transportation network company was able to comply with requests for accessible vehicles.
This bill would express the intent of the Legislature that every transportation network company ensure that it provides full and equal access to all persons with disabilities. The bill would require the commission, by July 1, 2019, to (1) develop regulations relating to accessibility for persons with disabilities, including wheelchair users who need an accessible vehicle, who utilize transportation network company transportation services, (2) consider assessing a fee on transportation network companies to fund on-demand accessible transportation services for persons with disabilities to ensure full and equal access to transportation network company services, and (3) conduct workshops with stakeholders, including all interested California cities and counties and persons with disabilities, in order to determine community need and develop programs for on-demand services, service alternatives, and partnerships.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: NOYES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 5440 of the Public Utilities Code is amended to read:

5440.
 The Legislature makes the following findings and declarations:
(a) The commission has initiated regulation of transportation network companies as a new category of charter-party carriers and continues to develop appropriate regulations for this new service.
(b) Given the rapidly evolving transportation network company service, it is the intent of the Legislature to continue ongoing oversight of the commission’s regulation of these services in order to enact legislation to adjust commission authority and impose specific requirements or prohibitions as deemed necessary as these services evolve.
(c) It is further the intent of the Legislature that every transportation network company ensure that it provides full and equal access to all persons with disabilities.

SEC. 2.

 Section 5440.5 is added to the Public Utilities Code, to read:

5440.5.
 As part of the regulations referenced in subdivision (a) of Section 5440, the commission shall do all of the following:
(a) Develop regulations, by July 1, 2019, relating to accessibility for persons with disabilities, including wheelchair users who need an accessible vehicle, who utilize transportation network company transportation services.
(b) Consider assessing a fee on transportation network companies to fund on-demand accessible transportation services for persons with disabilities to ensure compliance with Section 54.1 of the Civil Code by transportation network companies.
(c) Conduct workshops with stakeholders, including all interested California cities and counties and persons with disabilities, in order to determine community need and develop programs for on-demand services, service alternatives, and partnerships.