Governor Jan Brewer today signed into law SB 1087. This historic legislation -- the first of ts kind in the State of Arizona -- requires that taxi, livery and limousine companies in Arizona conduct preemployment drug testing and annual, random drug testing of all drivers.
SB 1087 was drafted by the Arizona Department of Weights and Measures and sponsored by Sen. Judy Burges (R-District 22). The bill mandates that "for hire" transportation businesses conduct drug testing procedures already federally-mandated for school bus, light rail and other mass transit operators.
"It is critical that Arizonans who patronize taxi and limousine services feel safe and assured the person behind the wheel is drug-free," said Governor Brewer. "This common sense but crucial measure will increase the safety of Arizona public transportation, and may ultimately save lives. I thank the Arizona Department of Weights and Measures for its work and persistence in bringing this bill forward. I am proud to sign it into law."
Under SB 1087, all "for hire" private companies must self regulate their drivers and maintain the drug testing results. Records of the drivers must be made available at all times for inspection by the Department of Weights and Measures as part of the state licensing process.
In 2012, the Department licensed 6,449 transportation "for hire" vehicles to operate in Arizona, amounting to an estimated 13,000 taxi, livery and limousine drivers throughout the state. HB 1087 will increase consumer confidence that these drivers are of safe and sound capacity when they take the wheel.
"It is often our senior citizens and people who can't afford to own vehicles that rely on taxi and livery vehicles. It was always surprising to me we were never able to assure these patrons the driver was drugtested," stated Kevin Tyne, Director of the Department of Weights and Measures. "We are grateful to Governor Brewer and the Legislature for implementing this most basic safety requirement in public transportation."