Thursday, 10 September 2015 06:23

Taxi parking bylaw in Swift Current needs major changing

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Editor:


As mentioned in our last letter, in regards to this taxi parking bylaw, the city and counsel and Mayor Shafer decided to not easily deal with this themselves, but instead just throw it into the courts wasting your valuable tax dollars.
Please call us at Rick’s Taxi in regards to the court date to come support us in this event. 
You know you are next if you own or drive a business vehicle, delivery vehicle, drive bus, have a camper, semi truck, and much more. 
First I would like to point out that this bylaw is very biased because it exclusively addresses taxi's and not other transportation or companies. 
For example, school buses, delivery vehicles, RCMP cars, semi trucks, campers, or even the city bus, not to mention others like oil company vehicles, and other businesses.
 It is far more hazardous to have a big school bus, semi, camper, or work vehicle than a taxi. 
This bylaw is not only bias and unfair it is not in any way making taxi service more efficient or effective as the wording in the bylaw states.
My wife and I are owner and operator of Rick's Family Taxi and we both drive and are on call 24/7, therefore we need at least one car probably two in front of our own home or in our own drive way.  This is where we live and as far as I know I can go home to have some form of home life while on call just as every other hard working business owner. 
We do not use this address to store all of our four cabs. 
We are not using our home address for a taxi stand.
We only own four cabs, where as other companies in town own seven or more and other big cities own 100's.
 I can see why this bylaw would be good for big cities with this amount by not parking 100's of cars in front of one home.
Why is the bylaw only in force if someone complains?
 I had two complaints from same person whom does not even live on our street, so I get a ticket while 20 plus other cabs, busses, campers, other transportation and other businesses are not bothered with this issue. 
What is the purpose of this harassment from a city which claims that life makes sense here?
The way I see it and I understand this bylaw was to stop us from making our home a taxi stand. 
I am okay with that and I am complying with that. 
As we only own four cabs, before given a ticket their was only two cabs at our address because of the necessity of our calls or maintenance needed for the taxi's we have.
Rick's Family Taxi  has started a petition to get this part of the bylaw changed. 
From commercial off street parking removed and changed to 'allowing limited number of taxi cabs at an address according to the amount of drivers so we as taxi owner operators can continue to operate.' 
If the city persists on ticketing then no taxi company in town can continually afford $100 parking tickets.
While bus transportation is subsidized, we are being penalized for offering the same service to Swift Current and area.
Swift Current has had taxi service for over 50 years and we have never needed this restriction in our parking before.
The city finally saw the common sense of revising the bylaw allowing dispatching from homes. 
Why is it unreasonable to allow taxi drivers to take their taxi cars home after their shift, and park in front of their own homes, like all other businesses as listed above do, especially if needed the next shift.
We pay three times what the average car costs to license and yet we cannot park in front of our own house? 
We don't have to make our client wait if we don't have to get our car from a taxi or if forced to park every cab, every time at the office then when we take a call would result in missed calls or people being unnecessary late for work or worse a call that is an emergency, not to mention its not efficient, nor cost effective which then means taxi fares should go up.
In conclusion, we like to say thank you to the community for your support, and to the one person who complained maybe next time you should think before you open your mouth, someday you may need a taxi quickly.
Len and Holly Waker, Rick’s Family Taxi

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