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SunLine Regulatory Administration. Taxi Service in Southern California’s Coachella Valley: From Independent Taxicab Operations to Franchises. The Starting Point. In April 2007 SunLine Services Group Board commissioned study of taxicab industry Status of industry at that time

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sunline regulatory administration

SunLine Regulatory Administration

Taxi Service in Southern California’s Coachella Valley:

From Independent Taxicab Operations to Franchises

the starting point
The Starting Point
  • In April 2007 SunLine Services Group Board commissioned study of taxicab industry
  • Status of industry at that time
        • 22 Cab Companies
        • 247 vehicles on the road
        • Approximately 46,000 rides in the Valley
        • Approximately 300 taxicab drivers
study recommended
Study recommended:
  • Stop all additions of new taxicabs.
  • Enforce vehicle age limit of no more than 7 model years.
  • Minimum of 5 vehicles owned by the taxicab company.
  • Require operating business address and 24/7 dispatching from the facility.
study recommended cont d
Study recommended (Cont’d)
  • Require all taxis to be insured through and by the taxi company policy.
  • Increase regulatory staff by one.
  • Require English and local geographic street proficiency.
new application process 2007
New Application Process - 2007
  • Approval of new applications and permits as condition to operate in the Coachella Valley.
  • The changes:
        • Reduced from 22 to 17 Cab companies.
        • Reduced from 247 to 172 taxicab vehicles on the road.
modified application process 2008
Modified application process -2008
  • Changed ordinance to allow transfer of taxi assets
  • Other changes:
    • 6 cab companies transfer assets to new applicant
    • Resulting in 12 cab companies, 176 taxicabs
    • Operator Permit granted to new applicant
    • The “new” company starts January 2008
the franchise process
The Franchise Process
  • March 2009 - RFP for franchise taxicab service
  • Key criteria for the proposers:
    • Airport Automated Vehicle Identification (AVI) fee.
    • Vehicle Permit Fee.
    • Driver background checks & permit fee.
    • Vehicle inspection.
franchise process cont d
Franchise Process (Cont’d)
  • Taxicab recalibration fee.
  • Meter and flag drop rate adjustments.
  • Proposer site visit.
  • Proposal requirements and franchise terms.
  • Review and adjustment of authorized number of vehicles.
start up standards
Start Up Standards
  • Vehicles, taxicab drivers, dispatching and customer care complaint procedures.
  • Record keeping and reporting.
  • Average minimum trips per day.
  • Taxi franchise identification requirements.
the evaluation process
The Evaluation Process
  • Evaluation Criteria
    • Insurance and Indemnification.
    • Proposer experience.
    • Financial stability.
    • Quality and coverage of service.
performance standards
Performance Standards
  • To ensure responsibility and accountability established monthly performance standards:
    • Clean and alternative fuels.
    • Accessible vehicles.
    • Customer request for service, receipt to pick up.
    • Clean and orderly taxicabs and drivers.
the 4 franchises
The 4 Franchises

Four franchises were selected.

Classic Yellow Cab – awarded 50 taxicab permits.

Yellow Cab of the Desert – awarded 40 taxicab permits.

American Cab – awarded 45 taxicab permits.

Airport Taxi – awarded 45 taxicab permits.

benefits of franchise
Benefits of Franchise
  • Easier oversight for regulatory compliance
  • Improved communication and coordination between SRA and Franchise principles
questions to ask and answer
Questions to Ask and Answer
  • As a self funded Regulatory Agency, can taxi administrative operations continue based on revenue from remaining taxi franchises?
  • Does reduction in number of franchises sustain market competitiveness and provide adequate customer choice?
  • In the event a franchise goes out of business can service area taxi operations continue with little or no impact to the passenger public?
  • How quickly can service be increased consistent with increased demand?
lessons learned
Lessons Learned
  • Financial stability of proposed taxicab franchise is key to a solid startup
  • Franchise Agreement should be in concert with RFP
  • New ordinance & regulation in place prior to implementation of franchise startup.
  • A contingency plan should a franchise cease to operate within the designated time frame
  • Defined compliance period for start up. No award unless in compliance
lessons learned continued
Lessons Learned (continued)
  • Non award of franchise if failure to meet start up compliance
  • Minimum quarterly franchise meetings with regulatory authority
contact information
Contact Information
  • C. Mikel Oglesby, General Manager
  • Naomi Nightingale, Director, Taxicab Administration
  • Michael Jones, Manager, Taxi Administration

32505 Harry Oliver Trail

Thousand Palms, CA 92276

Phone: 760-343-3456, Ext. 163