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Commissioner’s Corner

June 2012

It’s been a big month for the Taxi and Limousine Commission.  First and foremost, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and I announced on April 29 that our anxiously-awaited Boro Taxis will be Apple Green (see below.  The announcement was equal parts information session and celebration, since we were blessed to have with us all of our many legislative and industry partners, with whom we worked so closely to take this groundbreaking plan from concept to reality.

Group photo
Photo by Kristin Artz

And while the media has had a field day trying to find new and clever ways to rename our color choice (wasabi and mint are just two of the kindest suggestions we’ve heard on the subject) I assure you that Apple Green is the appropriate way to describe it…..like a crisp, delicious Granny Smith, it’s refreshing, and it’s always welcome.

In his own words, Mayor Bloomberg said that, “For decades, the goal of bringing better taxi service to residents and visitors outside of Manhattan eluded the city.  With our legislation to bring taxi service outside of Manhattan becoming law, at long last New Yorkers in all five boroughs will have safe, comfortable, less costly and legal street hail service as Apple Green Boro Taxis will begin appearing on our streets. The new Apple Green vehicles will bring thousands of hard-working livery drivers out of the shadows and into the legal economy, increase transportation options for those in need of accessible vehicles and, put simply, will bring more basic fairness to our transportation system.”

I myself said at the time that Apple Green was very fitting for the new Boro Taxis, in that it’s pleasing to the eye, easy to see from a distance and blends well with the urban landscape. Just as the yellow taxi and the black car were once new services that became a trusted part of their users’ lives, the Boro Taxi, too, will take its long-awaited place as a part of the city’s comprehensive transportation network.

Of course, gearing up for the coming of the Boro Taxis has inspired attention to the TLC’s Enforcement Division.  As promised, we’ve been staffing up in anticipation of the new system.  Only this past week, we celebrated the graduation of a new class of Inspector Cadets – Class 2012-A – who are already on the street, working with experienced officers and “getting their feet wet.”  In the accompanying photo, our latest class of New York’s Proudest receive the Oath of Office from our General Counsel, Meera Joshi.

Group photo

A few days prior to the ceremony, it was less about the pomp and more about the circumstance, as we allowed CBS 2 News to observe one of our regularly-scheduled Zero Tolerance operations in the Meat Packing District.  The results were spectacular, and Channel 2 reporter Dave Carlin captured the essence  of what we do, and the challenges we face, both efficiently and eloquently (you’ve got to see it for yourself – http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2012/05/15/seen-at-11tlc-officers-go-under-cover-to-bust-illegal-cabbies/)

Tlc Officer
Assistant Chief Edwin Lorenzi bags another one!

The big picture is that our Zero Tolerance efforts have yielded in excess of 36,000 illegal street hail summonses since last July, but that big picture is made up of many intensive smaller operations, such as the one highlighted on the news.  Rest assured…..we’ll keep the pressure on.

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