Taxi Driver Permits

Per Vancouver Municipal Code 5.76 (VMC 5.76), a person that operates a taxicab (picks up passengers) in the City for one of the 3 certified taxicab companies -- Broadway Cab, Clark County/Vancouver Cab, or Radio Cab -- must hold a valid City taxi driver permit (issued on or after January 16, 2013).

IMPORTANT NOTE:  This permit requirement does not apply to a person driving for an uncertified taxicab company or transportation network company (e.g., Uber, Lyft, etc.) that may unlawfully operating in the City under the current Taxi Code.


  • Application Procedures & Application
  • Official City fingerprint card (with City stamp) & envelope addressed to Washington State Patrol
  • Fingerprint-Based Criminal Background Check -- Instructions & Applicants Rights
  • City Business License Requirements & Processes

* These materials are available from the City Business Licensing Section by calling 360-487-8410 ext 4.

APPLICATION PROCEDURES -- New & Renewing Applicants

A. Application Preparation & Submittal - Each applicant must complete the following steps to apply for a new taxi driver permit or to renew a taxi driver permit every two (2) years.


Application Procedures.

  • Required Fees & Other Charges for Taxi Driver Permit -- see Section B below.
  • Application (available from City Business Licensing section).
  • Attachments Required with Application Submittal and Items Required Prior to Taxi Driver Permit Issuance, If Approved -- see below.
  • Taxi Driver Standards – see VMC 5.76.610.F and G;for list of conditions and offenses that would disqualify, or potentially disqualify, applicant from obtaining taxi driver permit.
  • Fingerprint-Based Criminal Background Check Instructions & Applicant’s Rights – presented below and;with official City fingerprint card.

2. INITIATE FINGERPRINT-BACKGROUND CHECK PROCESS as described in Fingerprint-Based Criminal Background Check Instructions & Applicant’s Rights.

3. COMPLETE & SIGN all required places on Application.

4. COMPILE three attachments required at application submittal (listed;below and on application).

5. SUBMIT following items to 1st Floor Customer Service Desk at City Hall, 415 W 6th St:

  • Completed & signed application (pages 1-2),
  • required attachments:
  1. Two 2-inch square passport-quality photographs of applicant.
  2. Copy of valid Washington or Oregon driver’s license.
  3. Certified copy of applicant’s state-issued driving record(s) -- including at least 10 years of records -- from each state in which applicant was licensed in 10 years prior to application date, and issued no more than six (6) months prior to date of application.
  • Non-refundable $100.00 processing fee (cash, check, credit card okay).


It is critical to only submit application form AFTER fingerprints are sent to WSP and application includes all required information;and;attachments, and a signature.; An INCOMPLETE APPLICATION will be returned to applicant, and applicant will only be allowed to resubmit application along with another non-refundable $100.00 fee.

B. Required Fees & Other Charges

The following table includes all fees and other charges to be paid to obtain a City taxi driver permit.


Agency or Party to Pay

Description of Fee or Charge

to Pay

When Payment is Due During Process

State & Federal Fingerprint-Based Criminal Background Check

Fingerprinting party or agency

Fingerprinting charge -- Note: Clark Co Sheriff’s Office only accepts cash.



At time of fingerprinting -- prior to submitting application to City.

Washington State Patrol (WSP)

State / national fingerprint background check processing fee -- check required; payable to "WSP".

$42.50 up to Jan 31, 2015 / or $40.75 as of Feb 1, 2015

At time of fingerprinting -- include check in envelope to WSP along with completed fingerprint card.

US Postal Service; (USPS)

Postage charge – 1st class + tracking.



At time of mailing completed fingerprint card and check to WSP.

Attachments for Application Submittal & Application Processing

Various businesses

Charge for two 2-inch passport-quality photographs.



At time of taking photos -- prior to submitting application to City.

WA Dept of Licensing, OR Dept of Motor Vehicles, and/or other states

Charge for certified copy of state driving record from each state applicant has had a driver’s license in during past 10 years.



At time of purchasing driving record(s) from state(s) -- prior to submitting application to City.

City of Vancouver

Taxi driver permit application processing fee (non-refundable).


At submittal of application and all required attachments to City.

Attachments for Release of Approved Permit & approved Permit

City of Vancouver

Fee for City business license (if not already obtained) – license required unless exempt (e.g., estimate grossing less than $12,000 per year in City).


(if required)

At time of obtaining City business license, if required -- prior to release of approved taxi driver permit.

WA Dept of Revenue, Business Licensing Service (BLS)

Fee for State master business license (if not already obtained) – license required for independent contractors.



At time of obtaining State business license -- prior to release of approved taxi driver permit.

City of Vancouver

Taxi driver permit issuance fee (payable only if permit is approved by City).


At time of picking up approved taxi driver permit.

C. Application Review by City

Notice of approval or denial of a taxi driver permit can take up to 60 days from date of receipt of complete application, although it typically takes less time if no issues arise during review of the application, required attachments, and fingerprint-based criminal background check results.

1. Approved Taxi Driver Permit - If permit is approved, applicant will be contacted, and notified where to pick up permit, and items required by the City prior to release of permit, including:

  • Copy of DETERMINATION OF EXEMPTION CHECKLIST (if qualified for an exemption from City business license).
  • $100.00 taxi driver permit fee (cash, check, or credit card okay)

2. Denied Taxi Driver Permit - If City denies an application for a taxi driver permit, the City shall mail a written notice of denial to applicant at the mailing address supplied by the applicant on his/her application, along with a written statement setting forth the reason or reasons for denial, and a summary of the appeal provisions set forth in VMC 5.76 and VMC 22.03.

Fingerprinting PROCEDURES

As of January 16, 2013, under Vancouver Municipal Code (VMC) 5.76, a state and nationwide fingerprint-based criminal background check must be completed every two (2) years by each City taxi driver permit applicant (new or renewal) and each owner, officer, director, managing partner, general partner, and principal of a cab company that holds a Certificate of Public Convenience & Necessity (CPCN).; Steps for starting the background check process are listed below.

Results from Washington State Patrol (WSP) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) are sent directly to the City for review – usually within 2 to 4 weeks from WSP’s receipt of an acceptable fingerprint card and a correct processing fee.; Upon receipt of results, the City reviews them pursuant to standards in VMC 5.76.

NOTE: A taxi driver permit application or cab company’s CPCN proof of compliance application will not be considered complete until the City receives the background check results from both WSP and FBI, and all other required application requirements are met.

Fees & Charges to Expect for Fingerprint-Based Criminal Background Check:

  • Fee charged by the party or agency taking the fingerprints -- see Step 2 below.
  • Fee charged by WSP for processing fingerprint-based background check -- see Step 2 below.
  • Postage or shipping charge for sending fingerprint card and payment to WSP --see Step 4 below.

To Start Fingerprint Background Check process, Complete Following Steps:

1. Obtain official City of Vancouver fingerprint card and WSP-addressed envelope from City.; For the purpose of each required background check, an official City fingerprint card and WSP-addressed envelope must be used.; These cards and envelopes are only available at the Customer Service Counter, City Hall, 415 W 6th Street, or by mail, upon request at 360-487-8410 ext 4.

2. Have fingerprints taken.; Take the following items to any private company or law enforcement agency* that provides fingerprinting services:

  • Official City fingerprint card,
  • Cash or a business or cashier’s check to pay for fingerprinting,
  • WSP-addressed envelope provided by the City, and
  • NEW FEE AS OF FEBRUARY 1, 2015.  Check payable to WSP for $42.50 if envelope will be mailed to WSP up to January 26, 2015 or $40.75 if envelope will be mailed to WSP on or after January 27, 2015 (personal, business, or cashier’s check accepted).

* Clark County Sheriff’s Office provides fingerprinting services at the Clark County Law Enforcement Center, at 707 W 13th St, and currently charges $15.00 per fingerprint card.; For details about their services, related charges, and hours, call (360) 397-2211, or go to:

3. Prepare envelope to be sent to WSP.; Upon completion of fingerprinting, request that the fingerprinting party/agency place the following items in the WSP-addressed envelope, and seal it:

  • Completed official City fingerprint card, and
  • Check payable to WSP for $42.50 if envelope will be mailed to WSP up to January 26, 2015 or $40.75 if envelope will be mailed to WSP on or after January 27, 2015 (personal, business, or cashier’s check accepted).

NOTE:; The fingerprint card will be rejected and the background check will not be processed if the check to WSP is not included or if the check is for the incorrect amount.

4. Send envelope to WSP.; As soon as possible after the WSP-addressed envelope is sealed with the completed fingerprint card and check to payable to WSP, mail or ship the envelope to WSP.

NOTE: Due to importance of the completed fingerprint card, it is recommended that the envelope be sent to WSP with a TRACKING SERVICE TO CONFIRM DELIVERY to WSP
(for example, USPS Delivery Confirmation Service or Signature Confirmation Service).