With A Few Tweaks, Commission Agrees To June 1 Deadline For Credit Cards In Cabs | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : News

With A Few Tweaks, Commission Agrees To June 1 Deadline For Credit Cards In Cabs

Play associated audio
Drivers will be able to select from a list of vendors who provide credit card services in taxicabs.
Rebecca Sheir
Drivers will be able to select from a list of vendors who provide credit card services in taxicabs.

If the effort to modernize D.C.'s taxicab fleet has moved at a snail's pace, the snail crawled another couple inches on Wednesday, as officials with the D.C. Taxicab Commission revised a proposal to install credit card machines in all cabs by this summer.

Barring any further setbacks, commission chairman Ron Linton expects the amenity that has been the norm in other major cities to start appearing in D.C. June 1.

"I thought originally by last November we would have had credit card machines in every taxicab. The big disappointment was losing the contract we had," Linton said.

In November, the District's Contract Appeals Board overruled a contract awarded to Verifone Systems to install the credit card machines, setting the District's modernization plan back several months.

The new proposal protects cabbies by increasing customers' fares $.50 to cover the costs associated with installing and maintaining credit card payment technology.

The base fare will increase from $3.00 to $3.25; the driver will keep that extra quarter. A proposed per-ride surcharge was decreased from $.50 to $.25, a fee that will be collected by the District. Drivers will be allowed to charge an extra dollar per ride if more than one passenger climbs into the cab. About 20 percent of all rides currently involve more than one passenger, Linton said.

"Numbers two, three, four, doesn't make any difference how many you got, you only get one additional dollar for any additional passengers," said Linton, who said the District will allow drivers to choose from one of nine possible payment processing vendors.

While most District residents have called for credit card payment options in taxis, some cabbies have resisted them.

"Because of the fee," explained cabbie Solomon Nessibu as he took a break in Tenleytown. "The credit card company charge you and you have to pay for the machine, pay for repair, extra receipt. It's cost-related. Other than that it's no problem."

If the taxicab commission's new proposal clears the final regulatory hurdles, Chairman Linton expects every cab in the District to have credit card payment machines by the end of August.

WAMU 88.5

Art Beat With Lauren Landau, Sept. 2

You can see a selection of Chinese films or meditate on the meaning of the word “axis” at an art exhibition.

NPR

These 5 Crops Are Still Hand-Harvested, And It's Hard Work

Saffron, vanilla, palm oil, cacao and cottonseed oil are still picked by hand in some parts of the world. Sometimes that manual labor shows up in the price of the food; sometimes it doesn't.
NPR

Sen. Menendez Wants Ukraine Supplied With Defensive Weapons

David Greene talks to Sen. Robert Menendez, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, about the situation in Ukraine. The New Jersey Democrat has just returned from a trip to Ukraine.
NPR

Why Do We Blindly Sign Terms Of Service Agreements?

Audie Cornish talks with University of Chicago Law School professor Omri Ben-Shahar about terms of service agreements for software and websites.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.