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SFMTA Taxi Services
Taxi Advisory Council
Monday, January 24, 2011
PRESENT: J. Bolig; J. Gillespie; L. Graham; J. Han; D. Hinds; D. Khan; B.
Korengold; J. Lazar; C. MacMurdo; W. Minikel; W. Mounsey; D. Nazarov; A. Rebelos; C. Sweis
ABSENT: T. Ajaegbu
STAFF IN ATTENDANCE: Christiane Hayashi – Deputy Director/Council Liaison
1. Call to order: C. Sweis called the meeting to order at 1:06 pm.
2. Roll Call – The Roll Call showed a quorum was present.
3. Announcement of prohibition of sound producing devices during the meeting.
4. Approval of Minutes: January 10, 2011
L. Graham motioned to approve the Jan 10, 2011 minutes. Seconded by A. Rebelos.
Public Comment: No public comment.
5. Public Comment
R. Vitcha said people with limited income should be exempted from surcharge. A Surcharge would be more effective to increase service in outlined parts of the city.
F. Fahy said police don’t know how to write tickets. There maybe should be a class on how to write tickets.
C. Fulkerson questioned for the medallion sales program whether it’s good to take out a loan vs. being taken off the waiting list.
E. Healy said cab drivers have a high rate of accidental deaths and longevity of taxi cab drivers is affected by stress.
T. Housman said she was at the SFMTA meeting and feels a lot needs to be combed through the legislation. Does not think there is enough time in the TAC meeting to touch on issues and hopes there will be another venue to discuss.
T. Lee said in New York it seems so easy to get a cab. Why do they have better cab drivers? They have more cab drivers running then SF. S.F has a schedule and has to pay gate even during slow times they work. He says he sees a lot of drivers start early cause gate is cheaper.
6. Report of the Council Liaison (Discussion only)
C. Hayashi, Deputy Director, SFMTA Taxi Services, gave a staff update. She wants to develop a legislative schedule: All legislation has to come two meetings before materials have to be finalized. One item she tried to post was a draft lease agreement.
John Wolpert, CEO, Upstart Mobile and Dan Carmel, Advisor gave a presentation on their application, Cabulous. This application increases the awareness of taxis in the city.
There was a question and answer session with the Board.
T. Housman asked if there is a way to give feedback about a no-go and stats on that.
E. Healy asked about multiple calls/ companies.
B. Taranto said dispatches are convenient because of i.e. large events. He asked about canceling orders? Drivers should be able to cancel orders, but passengers get mad, but there’s no contract so it’s not in the best interest for drivers.
M. Grueberg said as a user of Cabulous, anything that opens the door for customers to get to the fleets is good, avoiding the bottleneck of dispatch.
C. Fulkerson said Taxi Magic is a violation of privacy because it reveals information of driver on their way. Hopes that won’t be with Cabulous.
F. Fahey said transparency is not a feature for taxi drivers in a long time. He would like to hear a report of issues that have risen with Cabulous
R. Vitcha said what parts of the system are accepted by color schemes will be interesting so to see what adjustments can be made. Driver participation is important, not everyone pays attention to radio dispatch.
B. Newsham said he’s been using Cabulous for a year and it’s great because you get a great response.
J. Murray, Enforcement and Legal Affairs Manager, Taxi Services, took off table. No new changes.
J. Han asked for a draft of DPT lease agreement.
J. Murray said there is a draft, but not posted yet because of webmaster.
W. Mounsey said he’s very interested in waiting list. Someone is doing the math wrong because he’s getting two different numbers.
J. Murray said he’s moved one spot only in one month.
B. Korengold asked if there are any notices that have been sent to the top of the lists.
M. Harris said there are ramp offers, but no regular offers since ramp sent out.
J. Gillespie said when Chris gave her report about vinyl seats, was there any discussion on existing cars.
J. Murray said it should apply to all cars. That’s a question to ask C. Hayashi.
D. Hinds asked about waiting list. He’s confused about pending and denials.
M. Harris said approved is approved by MTA. Sold is by the bank. Pending are those we just put up on website and made note.
B. Mounsey said why is the waiting list so slow.
M. Harris said all persons are buying have to provide source of funds.
B. Korengold wondered where ramp medallions offered are coming from.
M. Harris said they are ramp medallions that have been turned in.
M. Grueberg asked about waiting list movement and if there’s a typo.
B. Taronto said the staff should separate housekeeping vs. topics for discussion such as the electronic waybills. There have been no notices about who will be getting medallions.
E. Healy 2nded some of B. Toronto thoughts. There is no possibility to discuss topics at TAC.
T. Lee said that MTA is doing a good job.
M. Harris, Investigator, SFMTA Taxi Services, gave an update on the Medallion Sales Pilot Program. We’ve done 37 transactions, 12 were SFMTA sale, 25 were buyer/ seller sales. Medallion sales investigations are now open. He gave an update on waiting list movement. There is reasonable movement especially compared to previous.
7. Discuss the impact of the Medallion Sales Pilot Program on the drivers and drivers on the waiting list. (Discussion and Possible Action)
C. Sweis said the delay in issuing medallions are causing problems
B. Korengold said the offers have slowed to a trickle because of sales. Cab drivers at top of list are losing money. Recommendations: Put a cap of number of transferable medallions. Priority shouldn’t be to transferable medallions. Put a requirement before Gas and Gate can go to long term lease. Drivers need to be informed of things (town hall meetings). He proposed further discussion on how people with seniority not on the waiting list can be considered.
J. Han said what should the council do on the recommend principles of waiting list. He wanted to talk about trends of buyers. Don’t know if it’s going to be able to absorb loses if program expands. Needs to be a way to protect Gas and Gate. Likes idea of being able to designate the type of medallion that’s being transferred,
A. Rebelos said buyers are jumping ahead of other wait list. He agrees with B. Korengold there needs to be a cap (i.e. the 70 year olds only). He thinks needs classes of medallions (GG and LTL). Color schemes are left out of discussion of Pilot program.
W. Minikel asked about ratio sold vs. issued. He thinks there shouldn’t be an age limit to selling medallions.
M. Harris said we are trying to keep the ratio of the number sold matches the number issued.
J. Bolig brought up Gas and Gate’s insurance problem.
D. Khan said eliminate people who aren’t really driving then open the list.
D. Hinds urged the city to form a limo taxi program.
C. Macmurdo said that if someone entered into waiting list now it would take 25 years for their name to come up. Even thought sale program slows down movement, the system was already broken.
J. Han recommended that one medallion sold, one should go to waiting list.
D. Hinds said the ratio is not practical, but that there was just miscommunication.
W. Minikel recommended medallion holder who got medallion the old way, shouldn’t get 160,000, but that they should get 80,000. Compromise: not have a full time medallion, but a peak time medallion.
C. Sweis summarized recommendations: Designating class of medallions, focusing on enforcement, cap on transferable medallions.
T. Lee said someone must lose job. Wants to support all council members. Wants to support that if someone doesn’t want to drive, pays money to MTA. He wanted to support all solutions, integrate taxis industry.
M. McGuire said doesn’t seem like there should be different levels of medallions. A program should be simple. She believed that people should have saved and that drivers just plan on buying now. If we changed the rules, then reason for revocations wouldn’t apply.
M. Gruberg said there has to be detailed reports when the pilot program has so much more to unfold. Recommendations should be made later versus scattered ideas. He would like to see on the report keeping people who are unable to buy them.
B. Taranto said B. Korengold data he provided is alarming. He believed that there should be discussion on agenda.
E. Healy said were a lot of people on list. There are people who deserve a medallion. There is a lack of data and we should monitor pilot program more closely.
T. Housman said we should either maintain or adjust ratio. MTA needs to pick a fairer ratio.
C. Sweis Closed Public Comment
C. Sweis said he wants to put in the report on what are the problems the drivers are having and how are they going to monitor those problems.
Loss of driver income, job security, and waiting list movement are problems drivers are facing.
J. Graham said what the movement was before the pilot program and what is the movement on the list now is something that should be included in this report.
C. Macmurdo motioned C. Sweis, chair, would make a preliminary report/ draft presentation for the report in March for review by TAC.
Ayes: J. Bolig; L. Graham; J. Han; D. Hinds; D. Khan; B. Korengold; C. Macmurdo; W. Minikel; W. Mounsey; A. Rebelos; C. Sweis
Absent: J. Gillespie; J. Lazar
8. Discussion of the expansion of the Medallion Sales Pilot Program based on age requirements. (Discussion and Possible Action)
9. Council Members requests for information [Discussion only]
J. Han wanted a copy of the enforcement report from DPT.
W. Mounsey asked to shorten agenda list.
No public comment.
10. Schedule upcoming calendar items [Discussion and Action]
C. Sweis took a vote who wanted to discuss SFCDA limiting driving requirement.
C. Sweis took a vote who wanted to discuss driver’s fund.
C. Sweis motioned agenda item for revisiting finalizing universal lease agreement for next meeting.
Majority approved by voiced Ayes. There were 2 voiced Nayes.
Absent: J. Gillespie; J. Lazar
ADJOURNMENT: The meeting was adjourned by standing vote at 4:47p.m.
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