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Cabbies Say No to $1 Surcharge for MTA

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

A motorcade of New York City taxi drivers is on its way to Albany to protest the state Senate's proposal of a one-dollar surcharge on cab rides to help bail out the MTA.

Jawaid Toppa has been driving a cab for 20 years. He says his business is already down and the surcharge would hurt him even more:

TOPPA: We are already suffering, due to the financial crisis in wall street, 50 percent of our business we lost already. If you go to Penn station, grand central, port authority, early in the morning, there are lines. There are lines of empty cabs that are vacant, and there are no passengers.

REPORTER: The Senate could vote as early as tomorrow on a bill that would send 50-percent of the proposed taxi tax to the MTA. The rest would go to repairing bridges and roads upstate. The taxi drivers say that's unfair. They're proposing an alternate plan to raise the jet fuel tax paid by airlines. Governor Paterson also opposes the taxi surcharge.

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