At the end of this month, the Taxi and Limousine Commission will consider a taxi fare hike of up to 20 percent. It would be the first fare increase since 2004.
But it’s not a done deal yet. We want to know: How does the TLC decide to increase taxi fares?
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What we found
In the first step in the process is a group usually involved in the taxi industry – in this case, the New York Taxi Workers Alliance and the Metropolitan Taxicab Board of Trade – submits a detailed petition for fare increases. In it, they must include various data points related to costs like vehicle maintenance and gas prices as well as driver retention information. The Taxi and Limousine Commission staff then reviews and verifies data before submitting its own report to the commissioners to vote on.
Before this can happen, the New York City charter requires commissioners to hold a public hearing. While the law requires them to hold a meeting every two years about lease caps – the amount drivers pay to medallion owners – there is no such law on the books about fare changes. For that reason, changes to the price of taxi rides are more sporadic. The petitions currently being considered were first filed in 2010 and commissioners decided to review it the same year as the lease caps.
Allan J. Fromberg, a media representative at the commission, said if commissioners approve the fare hike, it could be in effect as early as this August.