A resolution passed through the city council last week allowing taxi companies to employ vehicles up to their tenth model year.
The rationale appears to be that due to increase efficiency in technology vehicles have longer life, making them fit for service for longer periods. The resolution cites Consumer Union, the company that publishes Consumer Reports, asserting, “average vehicle reliability has increased in recent years, such that the useful life of a vehicle is now longer.”
Fleet owners will now be able to exploit vehicles for four more years than they were allowed previously. The last time the taxi age limit was set was in 1995; that year the retirement age of a car was set to six years counting from the year the model was released.
A vehicle that was released in 2000 will not be allowed use as a taxi because it goes over the age limit by three years; however, a car that was released in 2005 will be perfectly fine, for it still has two more years until retirement age. Vehicles which are over ten years old, must be removed from service, according to the city ordinance.
There are two other resolutions being considered that will up the number of total taxi medallions by 50: previously the limit was 200, set in 2005, the new resolution seeks to increase that number to 250 medallions; the second resolution seeks to change the fare for taxis from the current $3 per 1.5-mile which was set in 1994 to $6 — it should be noted that majority of taxis in the city charge a flat fee of $7 around the city.