Code of Conduct
In order to provide a high-quality public transit service for the diverse and vibrant community that uses Santa Rosa CityBus to meet their transportation needs, the City of Santa Rosa expects safe, courteous, and respectful behavior from our staff and patrons. The City has established this Customer Code of Conduct to promote the safety, security, comfort, and convenience of all those who use Santa Rosa CityBus, and to ensure that any one person may not adversely affect others using or operating the Santa Rosa CityBus system. Members of the public are expected to follow this Code of Conduct on all Santa Rosa CityBus vehicles and at transit stops and facilities. The City of Santa Rosa reserves the right to modify and amend this Code of Conduct at any time.
A person is prohibited from committing the following acts onboard Santa Rosa CityBus vehicles and at any CityBus bus stop or facility:
2. Smoking tobacco or cannabis products, including using e-cigarettes and vaporizers.
3. Possessing or consuming illegal drugs or alcohol.
4. Violating CityBus rules related to food and drink onboard buses.
5. Listening to music or media devices without headphones or earbuds, or using the “speaker” setting during phone conversations.
6. Carrying or possessing a weapon or other object that can be reasonably considered by CityBus staff to be a threat to safety.
7. Carrying any explosive, acid, flammable liquid, or toxic or hazardous material.
8. Throwing any object from or inside the bus or in transit facilities.
9. Taking any animal onto buses or into transit facilities unless the animal is secured in a carrier that was designed for the purpose of transporting the animal. Exceptions will be made for service animals.
10. Opening or tampering with emergency windows or any emergency equipment, except during an emergency.
11. Damaging or defacing the vehicle, transit property, or the property of other passengers.
12. Spitting, urinating, defecating, or creating unsanitary conditions through the presence of blood, urine, feces, vomit, or other bodily fluids.
13. Interfering with provision or use of transportation services (e.g., blocking the progress of a transit vehicle, disturbing the bus operator, failing to properly board or alight, preventing riders from safely accessing or using transit stops or facilities).
14. Using threatening, vulgar or abusive language toward transit system personnel or passengers, including use of profanity, slurs, or intimidation.
15. Threatening, harming, harassing, or assaulting transit system personnel or customers.
16. Making inappropriate physical contact of any kind with transit system personnel or passengers.
17. Any criminal conduct prohibited by the California Penal Code.
In addition to the above, passengers onboard Santa Rosa CityBus vehicles and in CityBus facilities are asked to abide by several basic rules to ensure the safety and comfort of the CityBus system, including wearing appropriate clothing (including but not limited to shoes and a shirt or other upper body covering), keeping aisles and boarding/alighting areas free of obstruction, and yielding priority seating at the front of the bus to older adults and people with disabilities.
Enforcement of the Code of Conduct
Enforcement Onboard Vehicles and in Transit Facilities
Passengers must comply with Santa Rosa CityBus personnel at all times. CityBus personnel are authorized to enforce the Code of Conduct and may refuse service to anyone who engages in prohibited behavior. Upon witnessing a violation, CityBus personnel may:
• Warn the offending passenger that further like conduct will be grounds for removal from the bus and/or future denial of service.
• Stop the vehicle until the offending conduct stops, the offending passenger has been removed from the bus, or law enforcement can assist in removing the offending passenger. At any time a passenger is put off the bus their bus fare shall be forfeited.
• Refuse to admit the passenger onto the bus if the offending conduct occurs before the passenger boards (i.e., at the bus stop or if the passenger is subject to a current suspension).
• Report the passenger’s conduct to the police.
Bus operators are required to report any violation of this Code of Conduct resulting in a refusal of service or the need for law enforcement assistance to their supervisor.
All Santa Rosa CityBus vehicles are equipped with cameras which continually record activity in and around the bus during operating hours. Recordings can therefore be reviewed by appropriate personnel and/or law enforcement in order to accurately determine details of all activities in question.
Administrative Action by City of Santa Rosa Transit Division
City of Santa Rosa Transit Division staff will review all reports by transit system personnel or passengers relating to complaints of conduct or behavior in violation of this Code. Upon such review, the City of Santa Rosa Transit Division may at its sole discretion:
• Contact the person violating the Code of Conduct to notify them of the violation and discuss expectations for conduct.
• Issue a warning letter or notification.
• Suspend future riding privileges for a definite or indefinite period (refer to “Suspension of Service” below).
• Notify appropriate law enforcement agency(s) and pursue arrest and criminal prosecution.
• Pursue any other appropriate legal or administrative remedy.
• Determine that no further action is required.
Dangerous Conduct Presenting a Serious Threat to Public Safety
In the case of conduct which is determined by City Transit Division management to present a clear and immediate threat to the safety of CityBus passengers and/or personnel and/or which has resulted in injury to the violator or to CityBus passengers and/or personnel, the City of Santa Rosa Transit Division may immediately suspend the violator’s access to CityBus transit services and/or facilities subject to the person’s right to appeal as described below.
Suspension of Service
The City of Santa Rosa Transit Division reserves the right to suspend service to individuals who violate this Code of Conduct. The Deputy Director of Transportation and Public Works—Transit Division is authorized to make decisions about suspension of service subject to the individual’s right to appeal as described below. The Deputy Director shall make such decisions in coordination with the City’s Risk Management division and City Attorney’s Office with notification to the Director of Transportation and Public Works.
Except in cases in which in an immediate suspension is necessary to preserve public safety, prior to proceeding with suspending access to CityBus vehicles and/or facilities, Transit Division management will make a reasonable effort to contact the violator verbally and in writing to provide a warning that their conduct, if continued, will result in suspension. Warning and suspension communications will be delivered in a format that is language-appropriate and accessible to the violator. These communications will be deemed received on the date of personal delivery or three days after the warning or suspension letter is mailed.
Suspensions will be handled as follows:
• Initial Suspension: The initial suspension of service for violation of this Code of Conduct will be for a period no longer than one week.
• Second Offense: The second violation of this Code within 12 months of the first offense may result in a suspension of transit services for a period no longer than one month.
• Third Offense: The third violation of this Code within 18 months of the second offense may result in a suspension of transit services for a period no longer than one year.
Penalties may be increased if the behavior is deemed to be of a criminal nature or presents a threat to the safety of transit system personnel or passengers.
Due Process – Appeal of Suspension Action
Individuals may appeal a suspension of service decision by contacting the City of Santa Rosa Transit Division to request an appeal hearing at the address or phone number listed below:
Santa Rosa CityBus
45 Stony Point Road
Santa Rosa, CA 95401
The appeal hearing shall be scheduled within 14 calendar days from the date the notice of the appeal is received by the Transit Division. If the request is made in person, the Transit Division may require the appellant to sign a written form requesting an appeal hearing.
A “Transit Suspension Appeals Panel” is established to consider all suspension appeals and render a final decision on a suspension. The Panel consists of:
• Director of Transportation and Public Works
• Transit Superintendent
• Representative of City Attorney’s Office or Risk Management
The Panel shall meet at a time and place provided to the appellant at least five days prior to the date of the Panel hearing. The appellant shall have the right to participate at the hearing in person or via telephone or video conference and may request a continued time or date acceptable to the Panel. If the appellant requests review of an appeal upon submission of written information and/or documents, the Panel shall meet to consider the written appeal. The Panel, after considering the appeal, may:
• Uphold the suspension, and determine the starting and ending date of the suspension
• Modify the suspension, and determine the starting and ending date of the suspension
• Dismiss the suspension and reinstate the appellant’s ability to use the transit service
The Panel’s decision shall be final. The appellant shall be notified in writing of the Panel’s decision within seven days of the Panel’s meeting.
The City of Santa Rosa is committed to ensuring full access to its services consistent with applicable federal and state law, including the Americans with Disabilities Act. If there is an accommodation the City can make which will make our system accessible to the rider, and it can be reasonably made, CityBus will make every effort to accommodate the request. Riders may request a reasonable accommodation by contacting CityBus at 707-543-3333, or visit https://www.srcity.org/200/Americans-With-Disabilities-Act for more information.
Remedy Not Exclusive
The City of Santa Rosa’s adoption and enforcement of this Code is not an exclusive remedy for conduct affecting the CityBus transit system and does not limit the City’s ability to restore to any other judicial or administrative remedy and/or penalty available under applicable Local, State or Federal law.