Tuesday, November 26, 2013

A letter followed by a visit to the New York City Comptroller 's office are on my agenda of fighting for taxi drivers' rights.

Hon. John C. Liu


Office of the Comptroller of the City of New York

One Centre Street

New York, New York 10007

Dear Comptroller Liu:

It has come to my attention that in the near future your office will be approached by the Taxi and Limousine Commission and the New York Taxi Workers Alliance (NYTWA), (or an entity under their control ) who will be seeking your approval of a contract  regarding disposition of funds that are being raised by a tax levied agaist drivers  of yellow medallion taxis. This money, which has been collected as a six cents a ride tax, is to be given over to  NYTWA in order that they manage a "Benefit Fund" that will purportedly be delivering redundant "Obamacare Navigation" services as well as other services whose scope and costs as well as providers of the services remain unknowns to those on whom this tax is levied..

The Taxi and Limousine Commission has no lawful right to impose a tax against medallion taxi drivers. There is no legislation, nothing in the City Charter or the State Constitution that authorizes these Commissioners to levy this tax and spend it as they see fit. They have no more of a right to take six cents from every taxi drivers income per trip than would the Department of Consumer Affairs have a right to tax every food server six cents or sixteen cents or sixty cents per meal served and hand it to NYTWA as a thank you from the departing mayor for political services rendered.

NYTWA subsists on grants and gifts from wealthy individuals. It is not a union in the sense that it does not collect much in dues, never has been elected by taxi drivers to represent them, has no labor contract with any employer. NYTWA has striven in the past to defend the interests of medallion taxi drivers but it has recently advanced Mayor Bloomberg's agenda which was revealed in a public temper tantrum to be hostile to the interests of taxi owners and drivers alike. NYTWA has been purchased with the taxi drivers' tip money to be a cat's paw for the outgoing mayor and this frankly anti taxi driver agenda. You surely understand that the outgoing mayor intends to continue trying to rule the people of New York through purchased Council members and other entities. Bloomberg has never been a friend of working people or of labor unions but now he has created a pseudo union to amplify and give a "Union Label" to his anti driver, anti poor, anti minority  transportation agenda. By not approving the contract you will provide the incoming mayor elect with political space to pursue policies he feels will benefit the people of our city.

I intend to come to your office in early December to file a Notice of Claim to recover the tax monies unlawfully taken from the hard working taxi drivers.

Yours truly,

Eugene Weixel