Taxi subleasing ruling sets precedent for taxi plate licence holders
On Oct. 28, 2014, the Licence and Community Standards Appeal Board confirmed a decision to revoke five taxi plate licences that were being unlawfully subleased over many years. The original decision to revoke the five taxi plate licences was made by The City of Calgary after conducting a Licence Review Hearing on June 2 and 3, 2014.
“The decision made by the Licence and Community Standards Appeal Board is an important step forward because it addresses the serious matter of subleasing,” says Marc Halat, Livery Transportation Services Manager.
Subleasing licence plates to drivers that don’t own the vehicle that the plate is attached to makes it difficult to track both the driver and the vehicle. This is important for many reasons like ensuring each taxi on the road has been thoroughly checked during mandatory vehicle maintenance reviews. As well, the taxi plate licence provides Livery Transport Services with driver information to contact drivers, which is imperative when following up on citizen complaints.
Under The City of Calgary Livery Transport Bylaw, the holder of a taxi plate licence must be the owner of the vehicle to which the licence is joined. Also, the holder is the only person who can charge legitimate fees for service in connection with the use of the licensed vehicle.
After receiving complaints regarding the subleasing of five taxi plate licences, The City conducted an investigation which included interviewing those involved and gathering documentation. The information was presented to a tribunal, adjudicated by the Livery Transportation Services Manager, with the decision to revoke the five taxi plate licences. The Licence and Community Standards Appeal Board upheld the decision that the owner of all five licences be denied eligibility to transfer the plates or be issued a transferable taxi plate licence in the future.
“A great deal of time and collaborative effort were put forth by the team to prepare for the Licence Review Hearing. This case is a first for The City of Calgary and sets a precedent for taxi plate licence holders. Under the Livery Transport Bylaw, subleasing a taxi plate licence is illegal. This is truly a big step forward for the Calgary taxi industry. We are thrilled to be setting an example for the industry in our support of taxi drivers and citizens,” Halat says.
The City of Calgary enforces and upholds the Livery Transport Bylaw to ensure public safety, service quality and consumer protection for the taxi and limousine industry and the public. To learn more about Livery Transport Services visit calgary.ca/taxi.