DC Residents for Reasonable Taxi Fares

UPDATE JANUARY 16, 2008- We have great news! The Mayor and Taxicab Commission listened to the thousands of public comments they received about the proposed sky high taxi fares! The Mayor\'s revised plan includes: -Lowering the base fare from $4 to $3 -Eliminating rush hour surcharges -Eliminating additional passenger surcharges (THIS WAS RESCINDED LATER BY FENTY!!!!) -Reducing snow emergency surcharges from 200% to 25% of the fare But the fight is not completely over- Two misguided Council Members (Marrion Barry and Phil Mendelson) introduced legislation for hybrid zone meters that may institutionalize an archaic and confusing zone system (with the accompanying high fares) at the expense of the public. Also, taxi drivers are planning weekly strikes-- even when the new fare structure brings them higher drop fares than NYC cab drivers! Also consider their costs of operating a DC taxi are a tiny fraction of what NYC cab drivers pay! Not only will these strikes show the greed of the participants, they will also be dangerous and irresponsible to the thousands of DC residents that depend on the taxi system for their economic, child care and healthcare needs. Please show the Mayor you support him by using our pre-written letter at http://www.caleynet.com/taxi Thank you again for your support- We look forward to riding in metered taxis on April 6! ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- As citizens of the District of Columbia and surrounding areas, we are dismayed with the Mayor\'s proposed taxi fare guidelines. This petition outlines our reasons for opposing the Mayor\'s proposed regulations and the rationale behind our opposition. THE FACTS: DC Mayor Adrian Fenty has proposed the highest fares in the country for the new DC taxicab meters his administration mandated. With a base rate of $4.00, the new fares far exceed taxi rates in any other major city in the country. The fares proposed by the Mayor will ensure that DC residents and the tourists that pump money into our economy will pay higher taxi fares than anyone else in the country--higher than New York, Boston, Philadelphia, and Los Angeles. Even cabs across the river in Arlington will cost about 20% less than DC cabs. According to a study conducted by the City of 21 cabs which were outfitted with pilot meters in 2005 and 2006, meter fares with a $4.00 base were nearly $1.00 higher on average than the antiquated zone fares. The $4.00 starting fare ensures that a mile-long trip for a DC resident will cost at least $5.25 during non-rush hours and $6.25 during rush hour. The same trip for a resident of Arlington would cost only $4.25. Additionally, the Mayor\'s proposed fares, while already high, will rise exponentially during traffic. In addition to already paying for riding in slower traffic, an additional fee is added to the fare for riding in a cab rush hour. Rush hour costs will include an irrational additional $1.00 fee per trip on top of a $.25 per minute idle cost when stopped at lights or during traffic jams. A 2005 study from the AAA notes that DC has the third-worst traffic congestion in the country. As DC residents we are urging the Mayor to rescind his ill-advised proposal and instead impose a $2.50 base fare, in line with other major cities like New York, as well as in line with fees Virginia residents pay for cabs. While the taxi cab commission may have abdicated their responsibility to serve as a \"check and balance\" to keep the greedy taxi association under control, we are citizens stepping up to be the advocates that they should be! Don\'t let the Taxicab Commission hoodwink DC residents again!

Sponsor

We are a group of citizens that have come together for a common cause: ensuring that DC taxi rates are fair and that the people who live and work in the District have a voice in the process. WE WANT TIME AND DISTANCE METERS, WE JUST WANT THEM TO HAVE PRICES THAT ARE IN LINE WITH EVERY OTHER CITY IN THE COUNTRY. We love DC cabbies and want to be able to afford taking them! We are David versus Goliath. The taxi cab industry in the District is organized and looking out for their best interests--so we need to look out for the interests of those that depend on a taxi system that is honest and affordable: two attributes which are now in danger thanks to the Fenty Administration\'s proposed fare guidelines for the newly mandated taxi meters. We believe that the Taxi industry is short-sighted and looking to make a quick buck off of DC residents. We look around DC and see mostly empty cabs. Why-- Rides are too expensive! The taxi associations should realize that a lower base fare will actually increase their business and their income. It\'s a simple rule of economics- if you lower the price, you\'ll have more demand. Our goal: to be sure that the citizens of the district are heard and that the taxi fare rate is based on fair economics--not backroom politics. You can contact us at DCTaxi@gmail.com

Links

Citizen Group Proposes Changes to D.C. Taxi Plan Washington Express http://www.readexpress.com/read_freeride/2007/12/citizens_tax_reform_group_offers_5point.php Cab Riders Organize Online to Protest Fares Proposed Base Rate Would Exceed Meter Fees in NYC, L.A. and Boston Washington Post http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/11/14/AR2007111401020.html Fenty Sets $4 Minimum Fare in Switch to Cab Meters Washington Post http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/11/01/AR2007110101309.htmlhpid=moreheadlines

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