Boston Mayor Thomas Menino is launching a top-to-bottom review of the city’s taxi system, after a series of investigative reports in the Boston Globe.
“We have real problems, and I’m very concerned about it,” Menino said during an interview with the Globe. “We’re not going to tolerate this nonsense.”
The Globe series, which began Sunday, including allegations of bribery and tax fraud by the owners of large taxi fleets. The paper says federal authorities are conducting a criminal investigation.
Menino plans to hire an expert on the taxi industry to help the city develop changes to cab regulations, including an overhaul of the Boston Police Department’s Hackney Division, which oversees taxi operations.
The mayor also wants state lawmakers to increase the amount of mandatory insurance. According to the Globe, most taxis are only required to have $20,000 of bodily injury insurance — less than half what’s required of bike messenger services, and far less than taxis in other large cities.
Other plans include the creation of an advisory board to help settle disputes between drivers and taxi owners, and a hotline for complaints from both drivers and passengers.
“For some reason we were not getting these allegations,” Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis told the Globe. “And we want to make sure we know of these things.”
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