It is with some dismay that I have read the report on the Adur District Councils decision not to accede to the local taxi drivers request for an increase in fares for the first time in eight years.
This situation has come about due to poor legislation in 1976 that changed taxi law for the first time since 1846.
So poor were the new rules they have been changed and redefined by many court precedent decisions over the last 40 years.
This together with the new internet taxi booking systems and the rise of privately run taxi circuits, has resulted in the intolerable financial pressure the 21st century taxi driver.
At the top of the financial pecking order and with all the clout is the local authority, the large circuit owners and the Internet companies.
These organisations have one objective and that is to get as many drivers as possible paying them for their services. Lower taxi fares mean greater demand for taxis with no responsibility for the drivers’ ability to afford to provide it.
The only organisation with a legal responsibility to take this into account is the setters of taxi fares, Adur District Council.
Adur, however, against the advice of their officers, can see no votes for increasing taxi fares and adamantly refuses to do so.
They do see the additional revenue from nearly two hundred vehicle licences and many more drivers licences.
Before 1976 there was approximately only 20 taxis in Adur.
You might ask where does all the extra work come from for these extra taxis? The truth is, Brighton and Hove. This is the result of the Brighton taxi circuits and cross border hiring. You are possibly aware that Uber and its like has caused distress for drivers around the world.
I cannot close without reference to a certain Adur taxi driver well known for getting his name in the paper on this matter. If you take into consideration his connection and financial interest in one of the largest of the Brighton taxi companies you do not need to go any further to work out his motivation.
The sad consequences of this policy of demonising the taxi drivers serves no purpose other than forcing legally responsible and hard working drivers out of the trade.
Access Cars & Buses Ltd
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