Gov. Cuomo Announces Taxi Bill Deal


taxiNew York – Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced today he won’t block the city’s bill to allow livery cabs to pick up customers who hail them on streets outside Manhattan.

But the details include a much greater emphasis on wheelchair-accessible taxis than envisioned by Mayor Bloomberg.

Under the plan the city will sell 2,000 new, wheelchair-accessible yellow cab medallions to raise $1 billion — money already included in Bloomberg’s budget for the next fiscal year, beginning in July.

In addition, 18,000 livery permits for street hails will be issued – 6,000 a year for three years – and sold for $1,500 each. Of them, 3,600 will be wheelchair-accessible.

Bloomberg had initially wanted 1,500 new medallions, all non wheelchair-accessible.

But Cuomo said at a press conference, “I don’t think New Yorkers want a taxi system which is not accessible.”

The taxi expansion appeared to be a done deal when the legislation was approved by the state Legislature. But Cuomo said the bill was done “in some truly peculiar fashion.”

“It was passed at the end of the session, then everyone got together to work out the details,” he said. “As governor I’ve taken a much more active hand in crafting the legislation.”

Cuomo had threatened to veto the bill in the absence of added protections for the disabled, better enforcement mechanisms and other changes.

{NY Post/ Newscenter}