Thursday, August 1, 2013

Taxi Drivers Fighting Windmills ?

Honking Cab Drivers Demand San Francisco Ban On Ride sharing Services

With horns blaring, a long line of taxicabs circled San Francisco City Hall this afternoon, with cab drivers demanding that the city ban smartphone-enabled rideshare services.

As their colleagues circled the block, dozens of taxi drivers gathered on the steps of City Hall to call for the regulation of rideshare companies such as Lyft, Sidecar and Uber.

One of the rally’s organizers, Barry Korengold, president of the San Francisco Cab Drivers Association, called the startup companies “unfair competition.”

He said, “legal cabs are getting screwed,” citing a large drop in taxi ridership since the companies began operating.

The taxi drivers are asking city officials and the California Public Utilities Commission to step in.

The CPUC, which regulates passenger carriers, has asked an administrative law judge to compile a report on rideshare companies.

In December, the commission tasked the judge with gathering information to “evaluate the safety of ridesharing businesses that utilize the Internet, social media, and location services to arrange transportation of passengers over public highways for compensation,” according to CPUC documents......

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