Council Approves Appeals Process For Taxi Drivers

OCEAN CITY – An ordinance outlining the amendments to the appeals process for permit licensing for taxi cab drivers passed as an emergency ordinance Monday night with the unanimous support of the City Council and the concurrence of the Mayor.

The ordinance calls for a change in the appeals hearings, calling for them to occur within five business days rather than within 48 hours.

The ordinance states that in addition to the municipal infraction citation that is issued to taxi cab permit violators, the Chief of Police has the authority to also deny, suspend, or revoke a taxi cab permit of medallion. The ordinance also states that, “Any person aggrieved by a decision of the Chief of Police may appeal to the Police Commission within 14 calendar days. Two members of the Police Commission will then conduct a hearing on the appeal within 5 business days of the request of the appeal. The two-member panel may affirm, modify, or reverse the decision of the Chief of Police.”

The ordinance formerly called for a hearing to occur within 48 hours. The amended ordinance now calls for the hearing to occur within five business days. The changes came at the request of the Police Commission.

In the event of an appeals hearing regarding a denied permit application, two members of the Police Commission are required to conduct a hearing on the appeal. Similar steps are taken in the event of an appeal over a suspended or revoked license. In both instances, the two Police Commission members have the right and authority to reverse decisions formerly made by the Police Chief regarding the matter.

The Police Commission requested that the ordinance be passed as an emergency ordinance. The council agreed unanimously, with concurrence from the mayor, to pass the ordinance as an emergency ordinance.