Streams

Livery Plan, And Billions in Budget Funding, Remain in Limbo

Tuesday, June 05, 2012

WNYC
Livery Cab (Kathleen Horan/WNYC)

The city isn’t planning to appeal a temporary injunction against the city's 5 Borough Taxi Plan — even though Mayor Michael Bloomberg called the decision “worrisome.” 

Supreme Court Judge Arthur Engron’s ruling Friday against the plan has put the sale of 18,000 outer borough livery permits, as well as the auction of 2,000 yellow medallions on hold. That sale was estimated to bring in about a billion dollars to the city's cash strapped budget.

Bloomberg told reporters on Tuesday, that money is key.

"If we were to not get it, it would be very serious,” he said. Bloomberg believes the city is on the “right side of the law” and the courts will eventually rule in their favor.

The court's ruling is in response to a lawsuit filed by yellow medallion owners and lenders. It alleges the city’s plan to allow livery taxi street hail service outside Manhattan violated the state's constitution because Bloomberg went to Albany for approval instead of the City Council.

Michael Woloz, a spokesman for the Metropolitan Taxicab Board of Trade, one of the plaintiffs in the case said, “We hope the City realizes that the law is unconstitutional and unsalvageable – and that we can work on a clean slate so the City can get real revenue.”

While the city said last week that the court was “mistaken” in its analysis and was exploring its appellate options, Corporation Counsel’s Michael Cardozo said on Tuesday that the city isn’t appealing the ruling because the judge's decision is only an interim one, expected to be in place for only a few weeks. “We believe that immediate resolution rather than appealing one interim ruling is in everyone’s interests,” he said.

The court will be receiving submissions from all parties in the case on June 19 in connection with motions for summary judgment.

The livery permit sale was to begin this month; the medallion auction was set for July.

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