Code Section Group

Public Utilities Code - PUC

DIVISION 10. TRANSIT DISTRICTS [24501 - 107025]

  ( Division 10 repealed and added by Stats. 1955, Ch. 1036. )

PART 11. PROVISIONS APPLICABLE TO ALL PUBLIC TRANSIT [99000 - 99582]

  ( Part 11 added by Stats. 1968, Ch. 1325. )

CHAPTER 8. Administrative Enforcement for Fare Evasion and Prohibited Conducts [99580 - 99582]
  ( Chapter 8 added by Stats. 2006, Ch. 258, Sec. 2. )

99580.
  

(a) Pursuant to subdivision (e) of Section 640 of the Penal Code, a public transportation agency may enact and enforce an ordinance to impose and enforce an administrative penalty for any of the acts described in subdivision (b).

(b) (1) Evasion of the payment of a fare of the system.

(2) Misuse of a transfer, pass, ticket, or token with the intent to evade the payment of a fare.

(3) Playing unreasonably loud sound equipment on or in a system facility or vehicle, or failing to comply with the warning of a transit official related to disturbing another person by loud or unreasonable noise.

(4) Smoking a tobacco product, eating, or drinking in or on a system facility or vehicle in those areas where those activities are prohibited by that system.

(5) Expectorating upon a system facility or vehicle.

(6) Willfully disturbing others on or in a system facility or vehicle by engaging in boisterous or unruly behavior.

(7) Carrying an explosive or acid, flammable liquid, or toxic or hazardous material in a system facility or vehicle.

(8) Urinating or defecating in a system facility or vehicle, except in a lavatory. However, this paragraph shall not apply to a person who cannot comply with this paragraph as a result of a disability, age, or a medical condition.

(9) (A) Willfully blocking the free movement of another person in a system facility or vehicle.

(B) This paragraph shall not be interpreted to affect any lawful activities permitted or First Amendment rights protected under the laws of this state or applicable federal law, including, but not limited to, laws related to collective bargaining, labor relations, or labor disputes.

(10) Skateboarding, roller skating, bicycle riding, or roller blading in a system facility, including a parking structure, or in a system vehicle. This paragraph does not apply to an activity that is necessary for utilization of a system facility by a bicyclist, including, but not limited to, an activity that is necessary for parking a bicycle or transporting a bicycle aboard a system vehicle, if that activity is conducted with the permission of the agency of the system in a manner that does not interfere with the safety of the bicyclist or other patrons of the system facility.

(11) (A) Unauthorized use of a discount ticket or failure to present, upon request from a system representative, acceptable proof of eligibility to use a discount ticket, in accordance with Section 99155, and posted system identification policies when entering or exiting a system station or vehicle. Acceptable proof of eligibility must be clearly defined in the posting.

(B) If an eligible discount ticket user is not in possession of acceptable proof at the time of request, an issued notice of fare evasion or passenger conduct violation shall be held for a period of 72 hours to allow the user to produce acceptable proof. If the proof is provided, that notice shall be voided. If the proof is not produced within that time period, that notice shall be processed.

(12) Selling or peddling any goods, merchandise, property, or services of any kind whatsoever on the facilities, vehicles, or property of the public transportation system without the express written consent of the public transportation system or its duly authorized representatives.

(13) Failing to yield seating reserved for an elderly or disabled person.

(c) (1) The public transportation agency may contract with a private vendor or governmental agency for the processing of notices of fare evasion or passenger conduct violation, and notices of delinquent fare evasion or passenger conduct violation pursuant to Section 99581.

(2) For the purpose of this chapter, “processing agency” means either of the following:

(A) The agency issuing the notice of fare evasion or passenger conduct violation and the notice of delinquent fare evasion or passenger conduct violation.

(B) The party responsible for processing the notice of fare evasion or passenger conduct violation and the notice of delinquent violation, if a contract is entered into pursuant to paragraph (1).

(3) For the purpose of this chapter, “fare evasion or passenger conduct violation penalty” includes, but is not limited to, a late payment penalty, administrative fee, fine, assessment, and costs of collection as provided for in the ordinance.

(4) For the purpose of this chapter, “public transportation agency” shall mean a public agency that provides public transportation as defined in paragraph (1) of subdivision (f) of Section 1 of Article XIX A of the California Constitution.

(5) All fare evasion and passenger conduct violation penalties collected pursuant to this chapter shall be deposited with the public transportation agency that issued the citation.

(d) (1) If a fare evasion or passenger conduct violation is observed by a person authorized to enforce the ordinance, a notice of fare evasion or passenger conduct violation shall be issued. The notice shall set forth the violation, including reference to the ordinance setting forth the administrative penalty, the date of the violation, the approximate time, and the location where the violation occurred. The notice shall include a printed statement indicating the date payment is required to be made, and the procedure for contesting the notice. The notice shall be served by personal service upon the violator. The notice, or copy of the notice, shall be considered a record kept in the ordinary course of business of the issuing agency and the processing agency, and shall be prima facie evidence of the facts contained in the notice establishing a rebuttable presumption affecting the burden of producing evidence.

(2) When a notice of fare evasion or passenger conduct violation has been served, the person issuing the notice shall file the notice with the processing agency.

(3) If, after a notice of fare evasion or passenger conduct violation is issued pursuant to this section, the issuing officer determines that there is incorrect data on the notice, including, but not limited to, the date or time, the issuing officer may indicate in writing on a form attached to the original notice the necessary correction to allow for the timely entry of the corrected notice on the processing agency’s data system. A copy of the correction shall be mailed to the address provided by the person cited at the time the original notice of fare evasion or passenger conduct violation was served.

(4) If a person contests a notice of fare evasion or passenger conduct violation, the issuing agency shall proceed in accordance with Section 99581.

(e) In setting the amounts of administrative penalties for the violations listed in subdivision (b), the public transportation agency shall not establish penalty amounts that exceed one hundred twenty-five dollars ($125) upon a first or second violation and two hundred dollars ($200) upon a third or subsequent violation.

(f) The issuing agency shall allow payment of the fare evasion or passenger conduct penalty or penalties in installments or deferred payment if the total amount of the fines is two hundred dollars ($200) or more and the person provides satisfactory evidence of an inability to pay the penalty or penalties in full.

(g) (1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), the issuing agency shall permit the performance of community service in lieu of payment of the fare evasion or passenger conduct penalty if the person is under 18 years of age or if the person provides satisfactory evidence of an inability to pay the fare evasion or passenger conduct penalty in full. The issuing agency may require the performance of community service at transit facilities, as defined in subdivision (f) of Section 640 of the Penal Code.

(2) The issuing agency is not required to permit the performance of community service in lieu of payment for a fare evasion or passenger conduct penalty if the person has had more than three fare evasion or passenger conduct penalties for which he or she was permitted to perform community service pursuant to paragraph (1), and did not complete any community service, provided that the person was offered a community service placement and was given adequate time to comply with the community service requirement.

(h) A person who receives a notice of fare evasion or passenger conduct violation pursuant to this section shall not be subject to citation for a violation of Section 640 of the Penal Code.

(i) If an entity enacts an ordinance pursuant to this section it shall, both two years and five years after enactment of the ordinance, report all of the following information to the Senate Committee on Transportation and Housing and the Assembly Committee on Transportation:

(1) A description of the ordinance, including the circumstances under which an alleged violator is afforded the opportunity to complete the administrative process.

(2) The amount of the administrative penalties.

(3) The number and types of citations administered pursuant to the ordinance.

(4) To the extent available, a comparison of the number and types of citations administered pursuant to the ordinance with the number and types of citations issued for similar offenses and administered through the courts both in the two years prior to the ordinance and, if any, since enactment of the ordinance.

(5) A discussion of the effect of the ordinance on passenger behavior.

(6) A discussion of the effect of the ordinance on revenues to the entity described in subdivision (a) and, in consultation with the superior courts, the cost savings to the county courts. The superior courts are encouraged to collaborate on and provide data for this report.

(j) For purposes of this section, “smoking” has the same meaning as in subdivision (c) of Section 22950.5 of the Business and Professions Code.

(k) For purposes of this section, “tobacco product” means a product or device as defined in subdivision (d) of Section 22950.5 of the Business and Professions Code.

(Amended by Stats. 2017, Ch. 219, Sec. 2. (SB 614) Effective January 1, 2018.)

99581.
  

(a) For a period of 21 calendar days from the issuance to a person of the notice of fare evasion or passenger conduct violation, the person may request an initial review of the violation by the issuing agency. The request may be made by telephone, in writing, or in person. There shall be no charge for this review. If, following the initial review, the issuing agency is satisfied that the violation did not occur or that extenuating circumstances make dismissal of the administrative penalty appropriate in the interest of justice, the issuing agency shall cancel the notice. The issuing agency shall advise the processing agency, if any, of the cancellation. The issuing agency or the processing agency shall mail the results of the initial review to the person contesting the notice and if following that review, cancellation of the notice does not occur, the agency shall include a reason for that denial, notification of the ability to request an administrative hearing, and notice of the procedure adopted pursuant to subdivision (b) for waiving prepayment of the penalty based upon inability to pay.

(b) If the person is dissatisfied with the results of the initial review, the person may request an administrative hearing of the violation no later than 21 calendar days following the mailing of the results of the issuing agency’s initial review. The request may be made by telephone, in writing, or in person. The person requesting an administrative hearing shall deposit with the processing agency the amount due under the notice for which the administrative hearing is requested. The issuing agency shall adopt a written procedure to allow a person to request an administrative hearing without payment of the amount due upon satisfactory proof of an inability to pay the amount due. An administrative hearing shall be held within 90 calendar days following the receipt of a request for an administrative hearing, excluding time tolled pursuant to this chapter. The person requesting the hearing may request one continuance, not to exceed 21 calendar days.

(c) The administrative hearing process shall include all of the following:

(1) The person requesting a hearing shall have the choice of a hearing by mail or in person. An in-person hearing shall be conducted within the jurisdiction of the issuing agency. If an issuing agency contracts with a private vendor pursuant to paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) of Section 99580, hearings shall be held within the jurisdiction of the issuing agency.

(2) The administrative hearing shall be conducted in accordance with written procedures established by the issuing agency and approved by the governing body or chief executive officer of the issuing agency. The hearing shall provide an independent, objective, fair, and impartial review of contested violations.

(3) The administrative review shall be conducted before a hearing officer designated to conduct the review by the issuing agency’s governing body or chief executive officer. In addition to any other requirements of employment, a hearing officer shall demonstrate those qualifications, training, and objectivity prescribed by the issuing agency’s governing body or chief executive as are necessary and which are consistent with the duties and responsibilities set forth in this chapter. The hearing officer’s continued employment, performance evaluation, compensation, and benefits shall not be directly or indirectly linked to the amount of fare evasion or passenger conduct violation penalties imposed by the hearing officer.

(4) The person who issued the notice of fare evasion or passenger conduct violation shall not be required to participate in an administrative hearing. The issuing agency shall not be required to produce any evidence other than the notice of fare evasion or passenger conduct violation. The documentation in proper form shall be prima facie evidence of the violation pursuant to paragraph (1) of subdivision (d) of Section 99580.

(5) The hearing officer’s decision following the administrative hearing may be personally delivered to the person by the hearing officer or sent by first-class mail.

(6) Following a determination by the hearing officer that a person committed the violation, the hearing officer may, and consistent with subdivision (f) of Section 99580, shall, allow payment of the fare evasion or passenger conduct penalty in installments or deferred payment if the person provides satisfactory evidence of an inability to pay the fare evasion or passenger conduct penalty in full. The hearing officer may, and consistent with subdivision (g) of Section 99580, shall, permit the performance of community service in lieu of payment of the fare evasion or passenger conduct penalty.

(Amended by Stats. 2017, Ch. 219, Sec. 3. (SB 614) Effective January 1, 2018.)

99582.
  

(a) Within 30 calendar days after the mailing or personal delivery of the decision described in subdivision (c) of Section 99581, the person may seek review by filing an appeal to be heard by the superior court where the same shall be heard de novo, except that the contents of the processing agency’s file in the case shall be received in evidence. A copy of the notice of fare evasion or passenger conduct violation shall be admitted into evidence as prima facie evidence of the facts stated therein establishing a rebuttable presumption affecting the burden of producing evidence. A copy of the notice of appeal shall be served in person or by first-class mail upon the processing agency by the person filing the appeal. For purposes of computing the 30-calendar-day period, Section 1013 of the Code of Civil Procedure shall be applicable. A proceeding under this subdivision is a limited civil case.

(b) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the fee for filing the notice of appeal shall be as provided in Section 70615 of the Government Code. The court shall request that the processing agency’s file on the case be forwarded to the court, to be received within 15 calendar days of the request. The court shall notify the appellant of the appearance date by mail or personal delivery. The court shall retain the fee regardless of the outcome of the appeal. If the court finds in favor of the appellant, the amount of the filing fee shall be reimbursed to the appellant by the processing agency. Any deposit of fare evasion or passenger conduct penalty shall be refunded by the processing agency in accordance with the judgment of the court.

(c) The conduct of the appeal under this section is a subordinate judicial duty that may be performed by a commissioner and other subordinate judicial officers at the direction of the presiding judge of the court.

(d) If a notice of appeal of the processing agency’s decision described in subdivision (c) of Section 99581 is not filed within the period set forth in subdivision (a), that decision shall be deemed final.

(Amended by Stats. 2007, Ch. 738, Sec. 42. Effective January 1, 2008.)

PUCPublic Utilities Code - PUC