Salt Lake City

Airport Recommends Against Taxi Rate Increase


January 29, 2013
Contact: Art Raymond

Airport Recommends Against Taxi Rate Increase
SALT LAKE CITY – Department of Airports Director Maureen Riley has declined a request from Yellow Cab taxi service to increase rates in Salt Lake City. Charged with making recommendations for cab rates to the City Council, Riley recommended the current rate structure remain the same and that no increase in rates be granted.

In a Jan. 15, 2013 letter to Riley, Yellow Cab requested an increase in the maximum taxicab rates, citing increasing expenses – including insurance and upgrades – as cause for the request.    The cab company asked for an increase in the per mile rate (from $2.20 to $2.40) and the flag drop rate (from $2.25 to $3.00).

Riley responded to the request in a letter dated Jan. 28, noting insurance costs for vehicles owned by drivers “are a cost to the drivers, not Yellow Cab.” She also stated the costs of upgrades “can be provided by an effective and efficient operator within the existing rate structure,” as evidenced by the two companies awarded contracts to provide on-demand taxi service in Salt Lake City. The new providers, Ace Taxi Service and Total Transit, were selected in 2011 from five companies that submitted proposals to the City. The City is still awaiting the ability to execute these contracts, pending completion of litigation with Yellow Cab, one of the losing bidders.

‘The two successful respondents will provide superior taxicab service to the City and better benefits for the drivers without a rate increase,” Riley wrote.

Under the new contracts, residents can expect to see many new benefits, including:

-State-of-the-art dispatching that will allow drivers to service areas of the City usually not covered and still be dispatched to receive prime fares such as the Airport
-Accessible vehicles for customers with disabilities
-A high percentage of “green” vehicles, resulting in a pollution reduction
Also, cab operators will experience new benefits, including:
-Vehicles fully insured by the company
-Company-sponsored incentive programs and benefit
-Preventive maintenance provided by company in vehicle lease

Rates charged by a ground transportation company for taxicab service in Salt Lake City are set by the City Council.