For the love of all things measured on a time and distance standard: please let's switch cabs to meters. Like, today please. Yesterday, Mayor Fenty (sort of) clarified the meaning of a recent court ruling that confirmed his power to dictate rules to the Taxicab Commission. I previously assumed he had those powers because he is THE MAYOR. But the city was sued by a group of drivers in order to delay or prevent the imposition of time and distance meters onto all cabs operating in DC. The original deadline of April 6, 2008 has come and gone and since the court ruling was just released, the new deadline could have slipped into the summer and even, as some speculated, October.
However, the mayor is sticking to his guns by demanding that taxi drivers in DC have time and distance meters installed in their vehicles by May 1, 2008, less than a month after the original date. There will be a grace period. While city enforcers can charge $1,000 for each offense (not having a working meter in the cab), they won't assess fines until June 1. Not surprisingly, some drivers are calling for a court appeal and, of course, a strike. Ugh. The driver's have had strikes several times regarding the meters and NO ONE CARES. As I've said before, its a regulated business, so expect to be regulated to a reasonable extent. This is reasonable. The people want the change, no matter how hard the cab drivers try to convince us otherwise. Also, every other city and its mother uses the meters and only the smaller cities with smaller taxi fleets use the zone system. I'll be so happy when this ordeal is over, can you tell?