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2014-03-25 at 15:08

Council agrees after debate to takeover regulation of taxicabs

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By Jamie Smith, tbnewswatch.com

Council has agreed in principle to take the taxis back.

Taxis and limousines have been regulated by the Thunder Bay Police Service for nearly 20 years. But the $65,000 program has been tying up officers and resources, leaving the Police Services Board to ask the city if it can take on the responsibility. On Monday night council agreed but not without debate.

Coun. Ken Boshcoff wants the $65,000 to be taken out of the police budget if regulation is heading to the city.

"We transfer that money to where it's going to be done," he said. "That's all. It's straight forward."

Administration said it doesn't know what taking on the responsibility will cost, although it will also generate revenue. It's also unclear what the new bylaw to have the city regulate taxi service will look like. That didn't sit well with Coun. Rebecca Johnson. She didn't want council to commit to something without having the facts.

"I have a problem with that," she said.

"I can't belive we're going to do something without all of the information."

Coun. Joe Virdiramo, who also chairs the police services board, said the issue has been looked at for years. A report was finally completed this past year with the option to return taxis to the city. It wasn't an overnight process and it won't be implemented right away.

"It's not happening tomorrow," he said. 

Council was told it needed to approve the idea in principle so that administration can start working on the program, expected to be brought back to council this fall and implemented next year.

Costs and wait times will also be explored through the report.

 

Tbnewswatch.com(11)

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Comments

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Papercut says:
Was in Toronto recently.....they have ample taxi's and they are very reasonable.

Why are taxi's so expensive here?

3/25/2014 3:25:35 PM
Mrbusinessman says:
I go to Winnipeg regularly.
Cab ride in Thunder Bay, from Grandview mall area to airport $40.
That's a quick 10 minutes down the expressway!
Cab Ride in Winnipeg from the airport to downtown , $18 !
That's a slow 20 plus minutes thru city traffic !
Can somebody explain that difference to me?
3/25/2014 4:25:36 PM
bttnk says:
10 minutes from Grandview Mall to the airport in a taxi? Come on man!!
3/26/2014 9:08:15 AM
Armchair Tom Brady says:
The cab prices are too damn high. Why is the gouging allowed? Not enough competition?
3/25/2014 5:16:23 PM
thunderbaycouncel says:
To Mrbusinessman: difference is we live in Ontario.
3/25/2014 7:09:54 PM
Watchful says:
Simple greed and a great way to welcome business and tourists to our beautiful town
3/25/2014 11:05:58 PM
Eyesopen says:
The taxi cabs in Yellowknife are cheaper than here. Can someone explain that to me? A few years ago there was a report on the radio saying the police services board was reviewing taxi cab pricing in the city and that it should take 6 months to complete....never heard of it again.
On another note, look in the back of the Porter in flight magazine. It lists its major destinations, airport to downtown distance and average taxi cab price for the ride. Thunder Bay is the shortest distance and by far the most expensive.
3/26/2014 7:50:07 AM
fastball says:
I refuse to take a taxi in this city, it's way too expensive. In Minneapolis you can go from uptown to dinky town for $12 here the same ride would be $120
3/26/2014 10:35:17 AM
Papercut says:
They need to OPEN the taxi business up so that competition can occur....instead of the stranglehold that 2 or 3 companies now have.

You want these bars and restaurants to flourish....yet we do not want drinking and driving.....MAKE TAXI's AVAILABLE AND AFFORDABLE....everyone wins!!!!!!!!!!!!!
3/26/2014 11:05:43 AM
fastball says:
Westfort to the Intercity Mall - over 30 dollars.
The airport to the Airlane - 11 dollars? It's barely more than a kilometer, for god's sake!
3/26/2014 11:09:29 AM
Jack Frost says:
Should rename this dismal and disheartening city with no jobs, no hope and no golden future on the horizon, to "TAX Greedy Bay."
3/26/2014 12:28:46 PM
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