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Proposed Ordinance Change Lowers Permit Fees for Cab Drivers; Mandates Using Pick-Up Areas

By Alyssa Schnugg

News editor


The Oxford Board of Aldermen is considering a change to the city’s Vehicle of Hire ordinance that would lower the amount cab companies pay for permits and remove the mandated $10 charge for trips within the city limits.

Currently, the ordinance says that vehicles for hire cannot charge more than $10 per person for one trip and a maximum of $2.50 for each additional stop within the city limits.

The proposed change read Tuesday during the Board of Aldermen meeting states that “trip fares will be designated by each taxi company” and must be posted inside the cab/taxi. Passengers must be informed of the fare before the trip begins.

Another proposed change lowers the now, $500 fee for new taxi companies to $100 and lowers individual driver permit fees from $50 to $25.

A new proposed section to the ordinance states that all drivers must pick up riders within designated downtown pickup locations on the Square between the hours of 9 p.m. to 3 a.m.; however, the ordinance does not include where those locations will be as of now.

Matt Davis, director of parking, said the locations will be determined after the proposed ordinance changes are approved.

“Oxford Police Department will designate the locations and the Board of Aldermen would approve them,” Davis said.

The Board of Aldermen was considering an ordinance this past summer that would have created the designated pick-up locations at the Downtown Parking Garage and along 14th Street.

However, cab and ride-share drivers, as well as concerned citizens, spoke out against the locations saying they were too far from the businesses. Those speaking against the ordinance said it forces people under the influence of alcohol to walk several blocks to get a ride, which could be dangerous, and that some may make the decision to drive rather than walk to get a ride.

The Board did not vote on that proposed ordinance and tabled it in July.

A second reading and public hearing on the proposed changes to the Vehicle for Hire ordinance will be held at 5 p.m. on Nov. 16.

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