(1) "Commission" means the public service commission of West Virginia;
(2) "Common carrier by motor vehicle" means any person who undertakes, whether directly or by lease or any other arrangement, to transport passengers or property, or any class or classes of property, for the general public over the highways of this state by motor vehicles for hire, whether over regular or irregular routes, including such motor vehicle operations of carriers by rail, water or air and of express or forwarding agencies, and leased or rented motor vehicles, with or without drivers;
(3) "Contract carrier by motor vehicle" means any person not included in subdivision (2) of this section, who under special and individual contracts or agreements, and whether directly or by lease or any other arrangement, transports passengers or property over the highways in this state by motor vehicles for hire;
(4) "Driveaway operation" means an operation in which any vehicle or vehicles, operated singly or in lawful combinations, new or used, not owned by the transporting motor carrier, constitute the commodity being transported;
(5) "Exempt carrier" means any person operating a motor vehicle exempt from the provisions of this chapter under section three thereof;
(6) "I.C.C." means the interstate commerce commission;
(7) "Motor carrier" includes both a common carrier by motor vehicle and a contract carrier by motor vehicle;
(8) "Motor vehicle" means, and includes, any automobile, truck, tractor, truck-tractor, trailer, semitrailer, motorbus, taxicab, any self-propelling motor-driven motor vehicle or any combination thereof, used upon any public highway in this state for the purpose of transporting persons or property;
(9) "NARUC" means the national association of regulatory utility commissioners;
(10) "Operations within the borders of this state" means interstate or foreign operations to, from, within or traversing this state;
(11) "Person" means and includes any individual, firm, copartnership, corporation, company, association or joint-stock association, and includes any trustee, receiver, assignee or personal representative thereof;
(12) "Planting and harvesting season" means the first day of January through the thirty-first day of December of each calendar year only as it relates to the administration of rules promulgated pursuant to subsection (j), section five, article five of this chapter;
(13) "Private commercial carrier" means and includes any person who undertakes, whether directly or by lease or other arrangement, to transport property, including hazardous materials as defined in rules and regulations promulgated by the commission, for himself over the public highways of this state, in interstate or intrastate commerce, for any commercial purpose, by motor vehicle with a gross vehicle weight rating of ten thousand one pounds or more, by motor vehicle designed to transport more than fifteen passengers, including the driver; or by any motor vehicle used to transport hazardous materials in a quantity requiring placarding under federal hazardous material regulations as adopted by the commission;
(14) "Power unit" means any vehicle which contains within itself the engine, motor or other source of power by which said vehicle is propelled; and
(15) "Public highway" means any public street, alley, road or highway, or thoroughfare of any kind in this state, used by the public.
§24A-1-3. Exemptions from chapter.
The provisions of this chapter, except where specifically otherwise provided, do not apply to:
(1) Motor vehicles operated exclusively in the transportation of United States mail or in the transportation of newspapers: Provided, That the vehicles and their operators are subject to the safety rules promulgated by the commission;
(2) Motor vehicles owned and operated by the United States of America, the State of West Virginia or any county, municipality or county board of education, urban mass transportation authority established and maintained pursuant to article twenty-seven, chapter eight of this code, or by any of their departments, and any motor vehicles operated under a contract with a county board of education exclusively for the transportation of children to and from school or other legitimate transportation for the schools as the commission may specifically authorize;
(3) Motor vehicles used exclusively in the transportation of agricultural or horticultural products, livestock, poultry and dairy products from the farm or orchard on which they are raised or produced to markets, processing plants, packing houses, canneries, railway shipping points and cold storage plants, and in the transportation of agricultural or horticultural supplies to farms or orchards where they are to be used: Provided, That the vehicles that are exempted by this subdivision and are also operated by common carriers by motor vehicle or contract carriers by motor vehicle, and their operators are subject to the safety and insurance rules promulgated by the commission;
(4) Motor vehicles used exclusively in the transportation of human or animal excreta;
(5) Motor vehicles used exclusively in ambulance service or duly chartered rescue squad service;
(6) Motor vehicles used exclusively for volunteer fire department service;
(7) Motor vehicles used exclusively in the transportation of coal from mining operations to loading facilities for further shipment by rail or water carriers: Provided, That the vehicles and their operators are subject to the safety rules promulgated by the commission and the vehicles that are exempted by this subdivision and are also operated by common carriers by motor vehicle or contract carriers by motor vehicle, and their operators are subject to the insurance rules promulgated by the commission;
(8) Motor vehicles used by petroleum commission agents and oil distributors solely for the transportation of petroleum products and related automotive products when the transportation is incidental to the business of selling the products: Provided, That the vehicles and their operators are subject to the safety rules promulgated by the commission and the vehicles that are exempted by this subdivision and are also operated by common carriers by motor vehicle or contract carriers by motor vehicle, and their operators are subject to the insurance rules promulgated by the commission;
(9) Motor vehicles owned, leased by or leased to any person and used exclusively for the transportation of processed source-separated recycled materials, generated by commercial, institutional and industrial customers, transported free of charge or by a nonprofit recycling cooperative association in accordance with subdivision (1), subsection (d), section one, article four, chapter nineteen of this code from the customers to a facility for further processing: Provided, That the vehicles and their operators shall be subject to the safety rules promulgated by the commission and the vehicles that are exempted by this subdivision and are also operated by common carriers by motor vehicle or contract carriers by motor vehicle, and their operators are subject to the insurance rules promulgated by the commission;
(10) Motor vehicles specifically preempted from state economic regulation of intrastate motor carrier operations by the provisions of 49 U. S. C. §14501 as amended by Title I, Section 103 of the federal Interstate Commerce Commission Termination Act of 1995: Provided, That the vehicles and their operators are subject to the safety regulations promulgated by the commission and the vehicles that are exempted by this subdivision and are also operated by common carriers by motor vehicle or contract carriers by motor vehicle, and their operators are subject to the insurance rules promulgated by the commission;
(11) Motor vehicles designated by the West Virginia Bureau of Senior Services for use and operation by local county aging programs: Provided, That the vehicles and their operators are subject to the safety rules promulgated by the commission;
(12) Motor vehicles designated by the West Virginia Division of Public Transit operated by organizations that receive federal grants from the Federal Transit Administration: Provided, That the vehicles and their operators are subject to the safety and insurance rules promulgated by the commission; and
(13) Motor vehicles used exclusively in the nonemergency medical transportation of Medicaid members by community action agencies as designated by the Governor, although these vehicles and their operators shall be subject to the safety rules promulgated by the commission.
(b) Effective the first day of January, two thousand three, the commission has jurisdiction over the issuance of permits for excess vehicular weight.
(c) Effective the first day of January, two thousand three, employees of the division of highways, department of transportation, whose primary governmental duties as of the thirtieth day of June, two thousand two, included the administration and enforcement of state statutes and rules relating to vehicular weight or the issuance of permits for excess vehicular weight shall be transferred from the division of highways and department of transportation to the commission.
(d) The commission shall implement and administer the provisions of this section and of articles six, six-a and six-b of this chapter.
(a) There is continued the Commercial Motor Vehicle Weight and Safety Enforcement Advisory Committee, the purpose of which is to study the implementation of the commercial motor vehicle weight and safety enforcement program set forth in this article.
(b) The committee consists of the following members:
(1) One member who is an employee of the Division of Highways, to be appointed by the Commissioner of Highways;
(2) One member who is an employee of the Public Service Commission, to be appointed by the Chairman of the Public Service Commission;
(3) One member who is a State Police officer, to be appointed by the Superintendent of the State Police;
(4) One member who is an employee of the Division of Motor Vehicles, to be appointed by the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles;
(5) One member who is an employee of the Development Office, to be appointed by the Governor;
(6) One member who is representative of the coal industry, to be appointed by the Governor;
(7) One member of the Senate, to be appointed by the President of the Senate;
(8) One member of the House of Delegates, to be appointed by the Speaker of the House of Delegates;
(9) Two citizen members, to be appointed by the Governor;
(10) One member of the largest organization representing coal miners, to be appointed by the Governor; and
(11) One member of the largest organization representing natural resource transportation drivers, to be appointed by the Governor.
(c) Members shall serve for terms of three years. No member may be appointed to serve more than two consecutive terms.
(d) The committee shall annually nominate from its members a chair, who shall hold office for one year.
(e) The committee shall hold at least four meetings each year or more often as may, in the discretion of the chair, be necessary to effectuate the purposes of this article.
(f) The public members of the committee may receive compensation for attendance at official meetings, not to exceed the amount paid to members of the Legislature for their interim duties as recommended by the Citizens Legislative Compensation Commission and authorized by law.
(g) Committee members may be reimbursed for actual and necessary expenses incurred for each day or portion of a day engaged in the discharge of committee duties in a manner consistent with guidelines of the Travel Management Office of the Department of Administration.
(h) On or before January 1 of each year the committee shall
submit to the Governor and to the Legislature a report of its
recommendations for improving the effectiveness of the commercial
vehicle weight and safety enforcement program.
(a) On and after July one, one thousand nine hundred eighty-two, common carriers by motor vehicles engaged in the business of towing, hauling or carrying wrecked or disabled vehicles shall, notwithstanding any other provision of the laws of the state of West Virginia to the contrary, be regulated by the provisions of this section and this section shall not be applicable to said carriers until such date.
(b) No common carrier by motor vehicle engaged in the business of towing, hauling or carrying wrecked or disabled vehicles and mobile homes shall be required to obtain a common carrier certificate or other certificate of authority from the commission prior to engaging in such business, however, such carrier shall not engage in such business unless and until such carrier shall have registered as a carrier with the commission in accordance with the provisions of this section.
(c) A person may not act as a common carrier by motor vehicle by engaging in the business of towing, hauling or carrying wrecked or disabled motor vehicles for hire unless that person has registered as a carrier with the public service commission as provided in this section; nor, may a person continue to act as a carrier by engaging in the business of towing, hauling or carrying wrecked or disabled motor vehicles for hire if his registration is revoked or suspended by the commission. A person registered as a carrier under the provisions of this section may not charge, demand, collect or receive a greater remuneration for the towing, hauling or carrying of any wrecked or disabled motor vehicle than the rates, fares and charges established by the provisions of this section.
The commission shall register all carriers as may make application for registration as a common carrier by motor vehicle for the purpose of engaging in the business of towing, hauling or carrying wrecked or disabled motor vehicles for hire upon satisfactory evidence to the commission that the carrier has complied with all applicable requirements of this chapter and all applicable rules and regulations of the commission. The commission shall by general order, applicable to all carriers registered under this section, fix, alter and determine just, fair, reasonable and sufficient maximum statewide or regional schedules of rates, fares and charges, and it shall establish reasonable classifications of carriers for which the schedules are applicable, but before the rates, fares and charges are fixed, altered or determined, the commission shall hold hearings in order to give all interested parties an opportunity to be heard, and it shall give reasonable notice of the hearings in the manner as the commission shall by rule prescribe. Carriers registered under the provisions of this section are subject to the regulatory powers of the commission as provided in section three of this article.
Upon the complaint of any aggrieved party, the commission may suspend or revoke the registration of any person registered with the commission under the provisions of this section for the violation of any rule or regulation established by the commission and applicable to that person or for the violation of any provision of this article applicable to persons registered under the provisions of this section: Provided, That for the first violation, suspension of registration shall be for a period of not more than thirty days; and, for a second violation the commission may revoke the registration for a period of one year; and, for a third violation the commission may revoke the registration permanently. But before any suspension or revocation is effected, the person registered under this section shall first be given reasonable notice of the charges against him and shall be granted an opportunity to be heard by the commission or its designee in accordance with the rules and regulations for hearings as may be by rule established by the commission.
§24A-2-2b. Rule-making authority; establishing rates for recovering, towing, hauling, carrying, or storing wrecked or disabled vehicles; complaint process; and required Legislative Audit.
(a) On or before July 1, 2016, the Commission shall promulgate rules to effectuate the provisions of this article.
(b) The rules promulgated pursuant to the provisions of this section shall describe:
(1) Factors determining the fair, effective and reasonable rates levied by a carrier for recovering, towing, hauling, carrying or storing a wrecked or disabled vehicle. The commission shall consider, but shall not be limited to:
(A) Tow vehicle(s) and special equipment required to complete recovery/tow;
(B) Total time to complete the recovery or tow;
(C) Number of regular and extra employees required to complete the recovery or tow;
(D) Location of vehicle recovered or towed;
(E) Materials or cargo involved in recovery or tow;
(F) Comparison with reasonable prices in the region;
(G) Weather conditions; and
(H) Any other relevant information having a direct effect on the pricing of the recovery, towing and storage of a recovered or towed vehicle;
(2) The process for filing a complaint, the review and investigation process to ensure it is fair, effective and timely: Provided, That in any formal complaint against a carrier relating to a third-party tow, the burden of proof to show that the carrier’s charges are just, fair and reasonable shall be upon the carrier;
(3) The process for aggrieved parties to recover the cost, from the carrier, for the charge or charges levied by a carrier for recovering, towing, hauling, carrying or storing a wrecked or disabled vehicle where the commission determines that such charge or charges are not otherwise just, fair or reasonable; and
(4) The process to review existing maximum statewide wrecker rates and special rates for the use of special equipment in towing and recovery work to ensure that rates are just, fair and reasonable: Provided, That the commission shall generally disapprove hourly and flat rates for ancillary equipment.
(c) All carriers regulated under this article shall list their approved rates, fares and charges on every invoice provided to an owner, operator or insurer of a wrecker or disabled motor vehicle.
(d) The rules promulgated pursuant to this article shall sunset on July 1, 2021, unless reauthorized.
(e) On or before December 31, 2020, the Legislative Auditor shall review the rules promulgated by the Public Service Commission under this section. The audit shall evaluate the rate-making policy for reasonableness, the complaint process for timeliness, the penalties for effectiveness and any other metrics the Legislative Auditor deems appropriate. The Legislative Auditor may recommend that the rule be reauthorized, reauthorized with amendment or repealed.
The commission is vested with power and authority to supervise and regulate all common carriers by motor vehicle and to fix, alter, regulate, and determine just, fair, reasonable, and sufficient rates, joint rates, charges and classifications; to regulate the facilities, accounts, service and safety of operations of each such carrier, to regulate operating and time schedules so as to meet the reasonable needs of any community, so as to provide adequate transportation service to the territory traversed by such carriers, and so as to prevent unnecessary multiplication of service among common carriers by motor vehicle and between them and steam and electric railroads, to require the coordination of the service facilities and schedules of competing common carriers by motor vehicle or electric and steam railroads; to require the filing of annual and other reports, tariff, schedules, and other data by such common carriers, in all matters affecting the relation between such carriers and the public and between such carriers and other common carriers. The commission shall have power and authority, by general order or otherwise, to prescribe rules and regulations in conformity with this chapter applicable to any and all such common carriers by motor vehicle and to do all things necessary to carry out and enforce the provisions of this chapter.
Any common carrier transporting solid waste in this state pursuant to authority granted under section five, article two, chapter twenty-four-a of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended, may make application to the commission for approval of a rate surcharge to pass through any increase in the disposal rate charged by the landfill at which solid waste is disposed by the motor carrier, commonly known as the tip fee, to commercial and residential customers, including increases which are the direct result of fees, charges, taxes, or any other assessment imposed upon the landfill by a governmental body. The commission shall within fourteen days of receipt of said application notify the motor carrier of approval of the requested rate surcharge, or approval of a rate surcharge other than in the amount requested and the reason therefor. The effective date of the approved rate surcharge shall be the same date as the effective date of the increase in the tip fee to which the surcharge relates; except that in the event the application for approval of the rate surcharge is received by the commission more than sixty days after the effective date of the tip fee increase, then the effective date of the approved rate surcharge shall be the date said application was received by the commission.
The commission shall immediately promulgate emergency rules which set forth the procedures for the filing of the tip fee rate surcharge application. It is the purpose of this statute to provide an expedited process which will allow the subject motor carriers to pass through tip fee increases to all customers. Only that data necessary to review in accordance with this statute may be required by the commission to be submitted by the motor carrier.
(b) The Public Service Commission shall prepare and provide commercial solid waste facility operators with a uniform disclosure form for use in effecting this provision.
(c) Any operator-driver of a solid waste motor carrier vehicle who violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, shall be fined not less than $50 nor more than $500.
(d) Any owner of a solid waste motor carrier vehicle which deposits solid waste in violation of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, shall be fined $1,000.
(a) Required; application; hearing; granting. -- It shall be unlawful for any common carrier by motor vehicle to operate within this state without first having obtained from the commission a certificate of convenience and necessity. Upon the filing of an application for such certificate, the commission shall set a time a place for a hearing on the application: Provided, That the commission may, after giving proper notice and if no protest is received, waive formal hearing on the application. Notice shall be by publication which shall state that a formal hearing may be waived in the absence of a protest to such application. The notice shall be published as a Class I legal advertisement in compliance with the provisions of article three, chapter fifty-nine of this code and the publication area for such publication shall be the proposed area of operation. The notice shall be published at least ten days prior to the date of the hearing. After the hearing or waiver by the commission of the hearing, if the commission finds from the evidence that the public convenience and necessity require the proposed service or any part thereof, it shall issue the certificate as prayed for, or issue it for the partial exercise only of the privilege sought, and may attach to the exercise of the right granted by such certificate such terms and conditions as in its judgment the public convenience and necessity may require, and if the commission shall be of the opinion that the service rendered by any common carrier holding a certificate of convenience and necessity over any route or routes in this state is in any respect inadequate or insufficient to met the public needs, such certificate holder shall be given reasonable time and opportunity to remedy such inadequacy or insufficiency before any certificate shall be granted to an applicant proposing to operate over such route or routes as a common carrier. Before granting a certificate to a common carrier by motor vehicle the commission shall take into consideration existing transportation facilities in the territory for which a certificate is sought, and in case it finds from the evidence that the service furnished by existing transportation facilities is reasonably efficient and adequate, the commission shall not grant such certificate.
(b) Rules and regulations; taking evidence at hearings; burden of proof. -- The commission shall prescribe such rules and regulations as it may deem proper for the enforcement of the provisions of this section and in establishing that public convenience and necessity do exist the burden of proof shall be upon the applicant. The commission may designate any of its employees to take evidence at the hearing of any application for a certificate and submit findings of fact as a part of a report or reports to be made to the commission.
(c) Certificate not franchise, etc.; assignment or transfer. -- No certificate issued in accordance with the terms of this chapter shall be construed to be either a franchise or irrevocable or to confer any proprietary or property rights in the use of the public highways. No certificate issued under this chapter shall be assigned or otherwise transferred without the approval of the commission. Upon the death of a person holding a certificate, his personal representative or representatives may operate under such certificate while the same remains in force and effect and, with the consent of the commission, may transfer such certificate.
(d) Suspension, revocation or amendment. -- The commission may at any time, for good cause, suspend and, upon not less than fifteen days' notice to the grantee of any certificate and an opportunity to be heard, revoke or amend any certificate.
(e) The commission shall have the authority, after hearing, to ratify, approve and affirm those orders issued pursuant to this section since the tenth day of March, nineteen hundred seventy-nine. For the purposes of this subsection the commission may give notice by a Class I legal advertisement of such hearing in any newspaper or newspapers of general circulation in this state, and such other newspapers as the commission may designate.
(1) "Driving time" means all time spent at the driving controls of a commercial for-hire vehicle designed to transport passengers;
(2) "Eight consecutive days" means the period of eight consecutive days beginning on any day at the time designated by the for-hire carrier for a twenty-four-hour period;
(3) "On duty time" means all time from the time a driver begins to work or is required to be in readiness to work until the time he or she is relieved from work and all responsibility for performing work; and
(4) "Twenty-four-hour period" means any twenty-four- consecutive-hour period beginning at the time designated by the for-hire carrier for the terminal from which the driver is normally dispatched.
(b) The provisions of this section apply only to for-hire carriers operated by an on board driver which is designed to transport passengers exclusively on any public highway or road in this state. The provisions of this section apply only to intrastate commerce and do not apply where preempted by federal regulation.
(c) Drivers of for-hire carriers may not:
(1) Engage in driving time of a for-hire vehicle for more than ten consecutive hours without eight consecutive hours off duty;
(2) Engage in driving time of a for-hire vehicle after the driver has on duty time of fifteen hours without eight consecutive hours off duty; or
(3) Engage in driving time of a for-hire vehicle after the driver has been on duty for a total of seventy consecutive hours within eight consecutive days.
(d) For-hire carrier companies shall keep time records, for six months, indicating the time all for-hire drivers report for duty, the time of relief from duty, hours driven, hours on duty, and hours off duty. These records shall be made available to the state police and the public service commission.
(e) The public service commission may promulgate rules necessary to implement the provisions of this section.
(b) Rules and regulations; evidence at hearing. -- The commission shall prescribe such rules and regulations as it may deem proper for the enforcement of the provisions of this section and may designate any of its employees to take evidence at the hearing on any application for a permit and submit findings of fact as a part of report or reports to be made to the commission.
(c) Permit not franchise, etc.; assignment or transfer. -- No permit issued in accordance with the terms of this chapter shall be construed to be either a franchise or irrevocable or to confer any proprietary or property rights in the use of the public highways. No permit issued under this chapter shall be assigned or otherwise transferred without the approval of the commission. Upon the death of a person holding a permit, his personal representative or representatives may operate under such permit while the same remains in force and effect and, with the consent of the commission, may transfer such permit.
(d) Suspension, revocation or amendment. -- The commission may at any time, for good cause, suspend and, upon not less than fifteen days' notice to the grantee of any permit and an opportunity to be heard, revoke or amend any permit.
(e) Notice of cessation or abandonment. -- Every contract carrier by motor vehicle who shall cease operation or abandon his rights under a permit issued shall notify the commission within thirty days of such cessation or abandonment.
The commission is hereby vested with power and authority, and it is hereby made its duty, to prescribe rules and regulations covering the operations of contract carriers by motor vehicles in competition with common carriers of this state, and the commission shall prescribe minimum rates, fares, and charges to be collected by such contract carriers by motor vehicle, which shall not be less than the rates prescribed for common carriers by motor vehicles for substantially the same service.
Every private commercial carrier, as defined in section two (n), article one of this chapter, shall establish, maintain and operate its motor vehicles in a safe manner and condition as prescribed by the safety rules and regulations promulgated by the commission under subsection (j), section five, article five of this chapter.
Whenever there shall be filed with the commission any schedule stating a change in the rates or charges, or joint rates or charges, or stating a new individual or joint rate or charge or joint classification or any new individual or joint regulation or practice affecting any rate or charge, the commission shall have authority, either upon complaint or upon its own initiative without complaint, to enter upon a hearing concerning the propriety of such rate, charge, classification, regulation or practice; and, if the commission so orders, it may proceed without answer or other form of pleading by the interested parties, but upon reasonable notice, and pending such hearing and the decision thereon the commission, upon filing with such schedule and delivering to the motor carrier affected thereby a statement in writing of its reasons for such suspension, may suspend the operation of such schedule and defer the use of such rate, charge, classification, regulation or practice, but not for a longer period than one hundred and twenty days beyond the time when such rate, charge, classification, regulation or practice would otherwise go into effect; and after full hearing, whether completed before or after the rate, charge, classification, regulation, or practice goes into effect, the commission may make such order in reference to such rate, charge, classification, regulation or practice as would be proper in a proceeding initiated after the rate, charge, classification, regulation or practice had become effective: Provided, That if any such hearing cannot be conducted within the period of suspension, as above stated, the commission may in its discretion extend the time of suspension for a further period, not exceeding six months. At any hearing involving a rate sought to be increased or involving the change of any fare, charge, classification, regulation or practice, the burden of proof to show that the increased rate or proposed increased rate, or the proposed change of fare, charge, classification, regulation or practice, is just and reasonable, shall be upon the motor carrier making application for such change. When in any case pending before the commission all evidence shall have been taken, and the hearing completed, the commission shall, within three months, render a decision in such case.
The commission shall prescribe such rules and regulations as to the giving of notice of a change in rates as are reasonable and are deemed proper in the public interest.
(b) When a consolidation, merger, purchase, lease, operating contract, or acquisition of control is proposed under this section the carrier, or carriers, or person, seeking authority therefor shall present an application to the commission and, after hearing, if the commission deems a hearing necessary, if the commission finds that the transaction proposed will be consistent with the public interest, it shall enter such order as it may deem proper and as the circumstances may require, attaching thereto such conditions as it may deem proper, consenting to the entering into or doing of the things hereinabove provided without approving the terms and conditions thereof, and thereupon it shall be lawful to do the things provided for in such order.
(c) Every consolidation, merger, purchase, lease, operating contract, or acquisition of control, or other transaction referred to in this section made otherwise than as hereinabove provided, shall be void.
(b) The commission shall employ personnel as may be necessary to carry out the provisions of this chapter and fix their respective salaries or compensation. The commission may designate employees as it deems necessary to take evidence at any hearing held or required by the provisions of this chapter. These employees are empowered to administer oaths in all parts of the state so far as the exercise of this power is properly incidental to the performance of their duties in accordance with the provisions of this chapter.
(c) The commission shall prescribe a schedule of fees to accompany (i) applications for certificates of convenience and necessity, (ii) applications for permits, and (iii) other filings and recordings of other papers with the commission. The commission shall prescribe a schedule of fees to be charged for (i) the certification of all records and papers (ii) the payment of witnesses and (iii) other costs necessary and incident to hearings before it or its employees. Sums collected in accordance with this subsection, except witness fees, are to be paid into the state treasury and credited to the public service commission motor carrier fund provided for in section six, article six of this chapter. Witness fees are to be paid to the persons entitled to them.
(d) The commission shall establish a system of accounts to be kept by motor carriers; or classify motor carriers and establish a system of accounts for each class. The commission shall prescribe the manner in which the accounts are to be kept. It may prescribe the form of accounts, records, and memoranda to be kept by the motor carriers, including the accounts, records, and memoranda for the movement of traffic, the receipts and expenditures of money, and any other forms, records and memoranda which in the judgment of the commission may be necessary to carry out any of the provisions of this chapter.
(e) The commission shall require persons subject to the provisions of this chapter to furnish any information in their possession or obtainable from their accounting or other records, respecting rates, charges, classifications or practices in conducting their business. The commission has the authority to inspect any books, papers or reports. Any statements required by this subsection are to be under oath when required by the commission. The form of all reports required under this chapter are to be prescribed by the commission.
(f) The commission as a whole or any of its members or designated employees, shall subpoena witnesses, take testimony and administer oaths to any witness in any proceeding or examination instituted before it or conducted by it with reference to any matter within its jurisdiction. In all hearings or proceedings before the commission or its designated employees, the evidence of witnesses and the production of documentary evidence may be required at any designated place of hearing within the state. In the case of disobedience to a subpoena or other process, the commission or any party to the proceedings before the commission may invoke the aid of any circuit court in the state in requiring the evidence and testimony of witnesses and the production of papers, books, and documents. The court, in the case of a refusal to obey the subpoena issued to any person or to any motor carrier subject to the provisions of this chapter, shall issue an order requiring the person or motor carrier to appear before the commission or its designated employees and produce all requested books and papers and give evidence relating to the matter in question. Any failure to obey the order of the court may be punished by the court as contempt. A claim that testimony or evidence may tend to incriminate the person giving the testimony or evidence does not excuse the person from testifying, but the person may not be prosecuted for any offense concerning which he or she has been compelled to testify.
(g) The commission shall require common carriers by motor vehicle and contract carriers by motor vehicle subject to the provisions of this chapter either to procure insurance from a company authorized to write insurance in West Virginia, to qualify as a self-insurer, or to deposit security upon terms and conditions and for limits of liability as the commission shall determine to be necessary for the reasonable protection of the traveling, shipping, and general public against injury, loss, damage or default for which the carrier may be liable. It shall prescribe rules and regulations governing the filing of evidence of insurance and security with the commission. In fixing the amount of the insurance policy or policies, the qualifications as a self-insurer, or the deposit of security, the commission shall give due consideration to the character and amount of traffic, the value of the property transported, the number of persons affected, and the degree of danger involved in any motor carrier operation: Provided, That the amount set by the commission for for-hire vehicles, that haul nonhazardous property with a gross vehicle weight of ten thousand or more pounds, shall be at least seven hundred fifty thousand dollars.
(h) The commission shall cooperate with the federal government or any other commission or organized delegated authority to regulate interstate or foreign commerce by motor vehicles to ensure that the transportation of persons and property by motor vehicles in interstate and foreign commerce into and through the state of West Virginia may be regulated and the laws of the United States and the state of West Virginia enforced and administered cooperatively in the public interest.
(i) The commission shall make agreements on behalf of the state of West Virginia with any other state or states providing for reciprocal rights, privileges, and courtesies between the licensees or holders of certificates and permits of the state or states and the state of West Virginia. These agreements may include provisions regarding certificates and permits, fees, assessments, and uniform vehicle identification cards, and the transportation of either persons or property into or through the respective state or states and the state of West Virginia. All existing agreements between a state or states and the state of West Virginia for reciprocal rights, privileges, and courtesies may, provided constitutional and contractual rights are not violated, be declared void by the commission, and new agreements negotiated.
(j) The commission shall promulgate (i) safety rules applicable to motor vehicles subject to the provisions of this chapter, (ii) rules governing the qualifications and maximum hours of service of drivers and chauffeurs of common and contract carriers by motor vehicle of passengers and property subject to the provisions of this chapter and (iii) any other rules that the commission may deem proper to carry out the provisions and intent of this chapter.
Repealed. Acts, 1961 Reg. Sess., Ch. 117.
Acts, 1961 Reg. Sess., Ch. 117.
(a) For each uniform identification card...$ 3.00
(b) Upon each power unit of such carriers of property, in accordance with its capacity as rated by its manufacturer, in addition to amount of subdivision (a):
of one ton or less capacity................$ 9.00
of over one to one and one-half tons
of over one and one-half tons to two tons
of over two tons to three tons capacity.....22.50
of over three tons to four tons capacity....27.00
of over four tons to five tons capacity.....31.50
of over five tons to six tons capacity......36.00
of over six tons to seven tons capacity.....40.50
of over seven tons to eight tons capacity...45.00
of over eight tons to nine tons capacity....49.50
of over nine tons to ten tons capacity......54.00
of over ten tons capacity, $54.00 plus $4.50 for
each additional ton of capacity in excess of ten
(c) Upon each trailer and semitrailer of such carriers of property, in accordance with its capacity as rated by its manufacturer, in an amount of two thirds of the amount provided for vehicles of its capacity in subdivision (b) of this section.
(d) Upon each power unit of such carriers of passengers, in accordance with the seating capacity thereof, in addition to amount in subdivision (a):
of ten passengers or less....................$13.50
of eleven to twenty passengers, inclusive.....22.50
of twenty-one to thirty passengers,
of thirty-one to forty passengers,
of over forty passengers......................54.00
(e) The annual assessment of each motor carrier shall be paid on or before the first day of July of each year. Additional assessments shall be collected upon the placing in use of any additional motor vehicle: Provided, That such additional assessments shall be subject to a reduction in the amounts shown in subdivisions (b), (c) and (d) corresponding to the unexpired quarterly periods of the fiscal year, but shall not in any event be less than one fourth of such amount plus the sum of three dollars provided in subdivision (a).
(f) Upon payment by any motor carrier of the assessment provided for, the public service commission shall advise thedepartment of motor vehicles by notice in writing that such assessment has been paid, whereupon the department of motor vehicles may issue motor vehicle license for the vehicles described in said notice.
(g) Prior to the beginning of any fiscal year the public service commission, after taking into consideration any unexpended balance in the motor carrier fund, the probable receipts to be received in the ensuing fiscal year, and the probable costs of administering and enforcing this chapter for the ensuing fiscal year, may fix the assessments provided for in this section for the ensuing fiscal year in amounts which, in the commission's judgment, will produce sufficient revenue to administer and enforce this chapter for said fiscal year: Provided, That in no event shall such assessments exceed the amounts set up in this section.
(b) In this section:
(1) "Motor carrier transportation contract" means a contract, agreement or understanding covering:
(A) The transportation of property for compensation or hire by the motor carrier;
(B) Entrance on property by the motor carrier for the purpose of loading, unloading or transporting property for compensation or hire; or
(C) A service incidental to activity described in paragraph (A) or (B), including, but not limited to, storage of property.
(2) "Promisee" means the promisee and any agents, employees, servants or independent contractors who are directly responsible to the promisee except for motor carriers party to a motor carrier transportation contract with promisee and such motor carrier's agents, employees, servants or independent contractors directly responsible to such motor carrier.
(3) The term "motor carrier transportation contract" shall not include the Uniform Intermodal Interchange and Facilities Access Agreement administered by the Intermodal Association of North America, as that agreement may be amended by the Intermodal Interchange Executive Committee, or other agreements providing for the interchange, use or possession of intermodal chassis, containers or other intermodal equipment.
(b) If the commission determines that the motor carrier has complied with all applicable provisions of this chapter, the commission shall issue to the motor carrier the number of identification stamps requested.
(c) An identification stamp issued under the provisions of this article shall be used for the purpose of registering and identifying a vehicle or driveaway operation as being operated or conducted by a motor carrier under authority issued by the I.C.C., and shall not be used for the purpose of distinguishing between the vehicles operated by the same motor carrier. A motor carrier receiving an identification stamp under the provisions of this article shall not knowingly permit the use of same by any other person or organization.
(d) The commission shall require the motor carrier to accompany such application with a list identifying each vehicle (other than one to be used in driveaway operations) which it intends to operate within the borders of this state during the ensuing year. The commission shall further require the motor carrier to keep such list current by filing with it an identification of each vehicle acquired for operation within the borders of this state and each vehicle whose operation is discontinued therein after the filing of such list. The filing of an identification of such newly acquired or discontinued vehicle shall be made with the commission on or before the sixteenth day after the motor carrier initiates or discontinues operation of the vehicle within the borders of this state.
(e) On or before the thirty-first day of December of each calendar year, but not earlier than the preceding first day of October, such motor carrier shall apply to the national association of regulatory utility commissioners (hereinafter referred to as NARUC) for the issuance of a sufficient supply of uniform identification cab cards for use in connection with the registration and identification of the vehicle or vehicles which it intends to operate, or driveaway operations which it intends to conduct, within the borders of this state during the ensuing year.
(f) A motor carrier receiving a cab card under the provisions of this article shall not knowingly permit the use of same by any other person or organization. Prior to operating a vehicle, or conducting a driveaway operation, within the borders of this state during the ensuing year, the motor carrier shall place one of such identification stamps on the back of a cab card in the square bearing the name of this state in such a manner that the same cannot be removed without defacing it. The motor carrier shall thereupon duly complete and execute the form or certificate printed on the front of the cab card so as to identify itself and such vehicle or driveaway operation.
(g) The registration and identification of a vehicle or driveaway operation under the provisions of this article and the identification stamp evidencing same and the cab card prepared therefor shall become void on the first day of January in the succeeding calendar year, unless such registration is terminated prior thereto.
(b) If a motor carrier permanently discontinues the use of a vehicle for which a cab card has been prepared, it shall nullify the cab card at the time of such discontinuance.
(b) If a cab card is lost, destroyed, mutilated or becomes illegible, a new cab card may be prepared and new identification stamps may be issued therefor upon application by the motor carrier and upon payment of the same fee prescribed for the original issuance thereof.
(a) Notwithstanding any other provision of this article to the contrary, on or before the thirty-first day of December, one thousand nine hundred ninety-three, the commission shall promulgate rules implementing a single state registration system, in lieu of the identification stamp and cab card system provided in this article, for motor carriers operating within the borders of this state pursuant to authority granted, or exempt status conferred, by the interstate commerce commission. The single state registration system shall be instituted pursuant to the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991, as implemented by the interstate commerce commission.
(b) The commission is further authorized to employ ten persons, who shall be in the classified exempt service, to facilitate enforcement of duties imposed upon the commission in this chapter.
(b) The commission is authorized to promulgate rules pursuant to its general rule-making authority, if necessary, including emergency rules, to implement the federal law and regulations established under the Unified Carrier Registration Act of 2005.
(a) The commission shall have power and authority to promulgate rules implementing a hazardous materials transportation registration and permitting program for operators of motor vehicles transporting hazardous materials upon or over the public highways within the borders of this state. Rules adopted under this section shall be consistent with, and equivalent in scope, coverage, and content to, the report submitted by the alliance for uniform hazardous material transportation procedures to the secretary of transportation, United States department of transportation, pursuant to paragraph (c) of section twenty-two of the "Hazardous Materials Transportation Uniform Safety Act of 1990", Public Law 101-615.
(b) The hazardous materials transportation registration and permitting program established in this section shall be coordinated with hazardous materials regulations enforced by other agencies of the state, and shall preempt and supersede hazardous materials transportation regulation and permitting programs administered or enforced by any municipality, county or other political subdivision of this state.
(c) The funds for the program established in this section shall be obtained from fees paid by registrants hereunder. Those fees shall be established by rulemaking and shall be apportioned; by the percentage of the registrant's activity in this state; by the percentage of a registrant's business that is related to hazardous materials; and by the number of motor vehicles operatedin this state by a registrant. Rulemaking may also establish fees for processing and registration: Provided, That said fees established in this section shall not exceed fifty dollars per registrant per annum, nor fifty dollars per vehicle per annum: Provided, however, That said apportioned vehicle fee shall not be required under this program sooner than the registration year beginning on the first day of July, one thousand nine hundred ninety-five.
(d) The commission may enter into agreements with other states, a national repository or federal agencies as necessary to implement the program established under this section.
(e) To achieve the purposes of this section, the commission may, through its inspectors or other authorized employees, inspect any facilities or motor vehicles of any person who transports hazardous materials subject to this program.
(f) It shall be unlawful for any person to operate, or cause to be operated, a motor vehicle transporting hazardous materials upon or over the public highways within this state without first having complied with the requirements of the registration and permitting program, as established by the commission. Failure to comply with the program requirements, as determined by the commission after notice and opportunity to be heard, may be sufficient cause for suspension or revocation of permits and registration under the program.
It shall be the duty of the West Virginia state police and the sheriffs of the counties in West Virginia to make arrests and the duty of the prosecuting attorneys of the several counties to prosecute all violations of this chapter and of other chapters governing the regulatory authority of the commission. The commission employees designated as motor carrier inspectors shall have the same authority as law-enforcement officers to enforce the provisions of this chapter and the provisions of other chapters of this code governing the regulatory authority of the commission as such provisions apply to entities and persons regulated by the commission in any county or city of this state. Notwithstanding any provision of this code to the contrary, such motor carrier inspectors may carry handguns in the course of their official duties after meeting specialized qualifications established by the governor's committee on crime, delinquency and correction, which qualifications shall include the successful completion of handgun training, including a minimum of four hours training in handgun safety, paid for by the commission and comparable to the handgun training provided to law-enforcement officers by the West Virginiastate police: Provided, That nothing in this section shall be construed to include motor carrier inspectors within the meaning of law-enforcement officers as defined in section one, article twenty-nine, chapter thirty of this code.
The commission is authorized to delegate motor carrier inspector duties to weight enforcement officers as it considers appropriate, following successful training and certification of individual officers, who shall then have the same authority as motor carrier inspectors under this section. The commission is also authorized to delegate weight enforcement duties to motor carrier inspectors.
(b) The speed of a commercial motor vehicle owned or operated by a motor carrier, exempt carrier or private commercial carrier may be proved by evidence obtained by use of any device designed to measure and indicate or record the speed of a moving object by means of microwaves, when the evidence is obtained by employees of the commission designated as motor carrier inspectors. The evidence so obtained is prima facie evidence of the speed of the vehicle.
(c) Motor carrier inspectors shall also perform a north American standard safety inspection of each commercial motor vehicle stopped for enforcement purposes pursuant to this section.
(d) Before exercising the provisions of this section, the motor carrier inspectors shall receive adequate training.
(e) Nothing in this section affects the existing authority of law-enforcement officers not employed by the commission to enforce the provisions of chapter seventeen-c of this code.