DK’s Brain: My Thoughts on Bloomberg’s New Proposal.

For those that may not know, our dictator…sorry, Mayor Bloomberg is proposing a plan to add meters onto livery cabs; thus legalizing them to pick up hails off the street in all of the five boroughs.  You have got to be fuckin jokin.  Livery cabs in the city steal some business away from the yellow cabs already as it is picking up illegal hails without cops doing anything about it…and now this?  Talking about trying to kill off a lucrative business…mind as well quit this and become a livery driver.  Why would I want to deal with all these TLC regulations, paying $1,000/year on a Motor Vehicle Tax that I have to pay every 6 months ($500)?  However, the more I read on this…the more this will be a loss for everyone involved.  That includes the people.

Why does it hurt yellow cabs?  It’s simple…they’re the only ones allowed to pick up hails legally within the five boroughs.  With more competition combined with the exorbitant lease prices cab drivers who work at garages pay weekly; this will only add to more stress and problems for these drivers.  Not every yellow cab driver likes working in Manhattan, there are a few who feel comfortable picking up hails in Brooklyn and Queens (myself included, time pending).  Do less yellow cabs frequent those areas?  Certainly, but also the demand for cabs out there are generally less.  Is anyone gonna really hail a yellow cab in Staten Island?  What will be the use of being a yellow cab driver then?

Why does it hurt the livery cabs?  You thought this would be advantageous to them?  Think again.  They won’t be able to haggle prices with the customers that get in their cars.  Yes, there are some passengers who feel more comfortable getting in these cars than in yellow cabs- whether yellow cabs won’t stop for them or for whatever else.  These cars really are only supposed to respond to calls from customers or if there’s a station so he/she can get in a cab late at night.  By adding meters and giving them the yellow cab treatment, many of these drivers and the garages that support them will have to learn a whole new system on the fly…defeating the purpose of those who left the yellow cab industry to want to continue driving.  They don’t make as much money as yellow cabs as is; throw the added costs and you’re gonna see people dropping out left and right.

Why does it hurt the people?  Yes, the people will have more options at their disposal and will find it easier especially at rush hour to find cabs.  Initially.  But for those who want to go outside of Manhattan they may find it harder to find a yellow cab in particular that is willing to leave the island since that’s the one borough where we have the biggest advantage/trust factor.  80% of the time that I make a trip into Brooklyn I don’t come back with anyone and/or I don’t do an intraboro trip.  With taxi and livery drivers losing patience with these rules and seeing their money dry up…they’ll be even less drivers on the road; making it even harder to find a car to take you to your preferred destination.  Weekends this may not be a problem but on weekdays you’ll feel the pain.

And so on.


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