In violation with an ordinance that cracks down on illegal party busses, the Chicago Police Department announced 17 party bus companies will be closing.
The CPD and Chicago’s Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection announced Monday that the 17 companies were found to be in violation of the ordinance after a three-day field investigation of operators, according to ABC7. During the joint-investigation, 17 cease and desist files were charged.
“We found everything from operating – obviously, the cease and desist was because of operating without a license – but we have found individuals not to have proper proof of insurance,” Commissioner Rosa Escareno, Chicago Department of Business Affairs, told ABC7. “I know that for those that were potentially conducting party bus activity that they have had no security, no cameras.”
Companies are now required to have their license displayed along with having cameras on board and a security guard on trips involving more than 15 people. Security is also required for trips where alcohol is served as well as trips that include stops where alcohol is served. Bus drivers themselves are also to ensure no passengers are carrying illegal firearms or drugs.
Party busses found to be operating illegally are subject to fines and having the vehicle impounded, according to police. Minimum fines begin at $1,000 for a first-time violation and increase to $5,000 for subsequent violations. Ignoring a Cease and Desist order also carries a minimum $5,000 fine.
“This isn’t just a downtown problem. These operators run their buses throughout the city and that’s why it’s important to the overall crime picture of Chicago,” CPD Chief Anthony Riccio told ABC7.