New Hampshire Underground

Regional Discussion => Monadnock => Keene => Topic started by: SocialDemocrat on April 14, 2006, 07:40 PM NHFT

Title: Report on Taxi deregulation...A chance for a libertarian victory....
Post by: SocialDemocrat on April 14, 2006, 07:40 PM NHFT
"All politics is local"   ----Tip O'Neil                            April 15, 2006

News you can use:-----Taxi deregulation....local porcines should get involved before local Republicans steal their thunder

The Keene Planning, Licensing, and Development Committee voted 2 to 1 to recommend taxis be deregulated in Keene on Thursday night. Conservative members of city council made a show of support for this new direction, following the efforts of councilor Joe Benzinski, owner of Romy's market and a local Republican. Others supporting deregulation included councilors Dale Pregent and Bob Farrar. Pregent, who owns an antique shop on Marlboro St, said he wouldn't want his antique businesses regulated. Farrar owns a machine shop and has made a name for himself on historic preservation matters.

Rosella Rowe, a coordinator with the Greater Keene Chamber of Commerce sat next to Adventure Limo owner Peter Allen in a show of support but didn't say anything on record.

Against this impressive display by conservative and business groups was yours truly, Social Democrat. I argued that de-regulations benefits stronger interests at the expense of weaker parties...like the disabled, poor, elderly, young, and other other vulnerable populations. I also argued that while the Adventure Limo and Ideal Taxi are private businesses, they provide a public service.

I finished with referencing the Sermon on the Mount....That we are our brother's keeper...

Other pro-regulation support came in the form of a letter written by novelist Ernie Hebert and sent to local newspapers and to the city government. Both Ernie and I worked as cab drivers, hence our import. An un-named fellow in the audience also voiced support for continued regulation.

The high-point of the night came with Mayor Mike Blastos, a Democrat argued for de-regulation, noting that he wouldn't want anyone telling him how much he can charge for lobster at his resturant on Winchester St.

Overall, a heated debate took place between two opposing views. Rarely do we see such animals in public commmittees. It was unfortunate more spectaters weren't in on it. The most humorous of comments came from Benzinski who likened my concern for the "vulnerable groups" to those viewers who would get worked up over old melodramatic epispodes of Lassie.

Only three members of the five-member committee showed up for the vote. Councilors Freddie Parselles and Charles Redfern were absent. James Duffy argued for continued regulation while Paula-Ayn Phillips made the motion for de-regulation. Chairman Philip M Jones supported her. It goes before the full council where councilor Joe Benzinski predicts an easy victory.

                                                          By Steve Lindsey
                                                          SteveLindsey60@hotmail.com

The only media to cover the hearing was the Union Leader that sent a stringer. Local media, including the Monadnock Radio Group and the Sentinel were no shows.

The Union Leader piece, already posted here today...I do again for ready reference. See: http://www.unionleader.com/article.aspx?headline=Keene+panel+returns+cab+regulation+plan+to+council&articleId=e2dbb374-e891-44d3-959d-e35a9308abb6

Keene panel returns cab regulation plan to council

By FAITH SAWYER
Special to New Hampshire Union Leader

Keene ? A proposal to deregulate city taxi fares has advanced through a city council committee and will return to the full council for a final vote.

The planning, licenses, and development board split, 2-1, after a lengthy discussion Wednesday over regulating the two taxi services. City officials, cab owners and the public appeared equally divided on the issue.

?How presumptuous we are to think we can run a cab company better than a cab company,? said City Councilor Joseph Benzinski, a local business owner.

The board conferred over a possible regulated rate increase to reflect an inflated oil price since its last update in 2001, but settled on voting directly on whether the base cab fare should be regulated at all.

Steve Lindsey, a proponent for regulation, said local cabs provide a public service to a silent population that often is sick, poor, or handicapped.

Siding with Lindsey was Joan Copley, owner of Ideal Taxi, who attended Wednesday?s meeting but did not speak publicly.

?I consider myself a community-minded businessman,? said Peter Allen, owner of Adventure Limousine, speaking for deregulation. ?We are aware of our customers.?

The regulation initially was installed as a protection against price gauging for popular events or times in the city. About 30 percent of New Hampshire towns regulate cab fares, according to City Clerk Patricia Little.

Cities that regulate taxi rates include Concord, Manchester and Portsmouth.

The full city council will vote on an ordinance that would deregulate cab service at its next meeting in two weeks, Benzinski said.
Title: Re: Report on Taxi deregulation...A chance for a libertarian victory....
Post by: FTL_Ian on April 15, 2006, 01:39 AM NHFT
You're quite an interesting character, Steve.  Why alert us to issues where we can oppose you?

On the issue, instead of calling for rule by force, why not start your own cab and compete?
Title: Re: Report on Taxi deregulation...A chance for a libertarian victory....
Post by: Russell Kanning on April 15, 2006, 07:52 AM NHFT
Would you like us to use this in the next print issue Steve?

News you can use:-----Taxi deregulation....local porcines should get involved before local Republicans steal their thunder.
Are you talking about local pigs or porcupines? :)
As for me and my household, we like it when good things happen outside our presence and without getting credit. 8) (Matt. 6:1)

I think a good lesson from the Sermon on the Hillside by Christ is .... do to others what you would want done to you. (Matt 7:12) Even though your store deals with the public, you guys would not like to be told how much to sell things for.

I judge people way too often, but in this case I think it would be best to leave the taxi rate decisions to the taxi companies. They are not forcing people into the cabs.
Title: Re: Report on Taxi deregulation...A chance for a libertarian victory....
Post by: Pat McCotter on April 15, 2006, 08:15 AM NHFT
The regulation initially was installed as a protection against price gauging for popular events or times in the city.

So, during popular events someone like Steve can get their cab on the road to handle the folks the regular companies are neglecting.
Title: Re: Report on Taxi deregulation...A chance for a libertarian victory....
Post by: SocialDemocrat on April 15, 2006, 08:32 PM NHFT
Lets see...where to start....reference to local libertarians, not police....

Ian, An interesting character, I am...I am always interested in those who dissent....whether from the right or left, or from some other angle...My overwhelming concern is the marketplace of ideas...When I worked for the now defunct Walpole Valley Times-Journal, I always gave the conservatives and Republicans in Cheshire County a fair hearing, my own prejudices not withstanding...To which many are grateful to this day...The readers of the paper, not my political views, were served first...

As to this taxi deregulation issue, it, like so many other decisions made in this city, are made in rather unpublic ways.  Better noisy opposition than silence and backdoor deals. Let the sun in on any issue and the citizenry will be better served.

Russell, I would like to rewrite it for print, smoothing it out a little if it is to be out on the street. As written now, it was hastly done for this forum, so it is not too professional. Needs work for hardcopy. So I will rework it for you, print it hear for comment...and copy edit it! and then to the KFP.

I would, however, like to see someone from the KFP cover the upcoming big vote on this at the wider, city council meeting.

I still would like to do the South Keene Bridge Park project and maybe have your or another freestate writer oppose this in an adjoining column.
Title: Re: Report on Taxi deregulation...A chance for a libertarian victory....
Post by: Russell Kanning on April 15, 2006, 08:46 PM NHFT
My psychiatrist has strictly forbidden me to attend government hearings.
Title: Re: Report on Taxi deregulation...A chance for a libertarian victory....
Post by: SocialDemocrat on April 15, 2006, 08:50 PM NHFT
Serious?

They can be infuriating... School board meetings are the worst...Even Mark Twain decried this necessary tasks for cub reporters!
Title: Re: Report on Taxi deregulation...A chance for a libertarian victory....
Post by: Russell Kanning on April 15, 2006, 08:52 PM NHFT
Well we don't have any cub reporters. :)
Title: Re: Report on Taxi deregulation...A chance for a libertarian victory....
Post by: FTL_Ian on April 16, 2006, 04:24 AM NHFT
My psychiatrist has strictly forbidden me to attend government hearings.

Who's your psychiatrist?
Title: Re: Report on Taxi deregulation...A chance for a libertarian victory....
Post by: Russell Kanning on April 16, 2006, 08:28 AM NHFT
our cat Alice
Title: Re: Report on Taxi deregulation...A chance for a libertarian victory....
Post by: Lloyd Danforth on April 16, 2006, 08:33 AM NHFT
Serious?

They can be infuriating... School board meetings are the worst...Even Mark Twain decried this necessary tasks for cub reporters!

Isn't there a quote somewhere that goes something like: "If you have a weak stomach, you don't want to see how Laws or Fig Newtons are made"
Title: Re: Report on Taxi deregulation...A chance for a libertarian victory....
Post by: FTL_Ian on April 16, 2006, 02:04 PM NHFT
our cat Alice

 ;D
Title: Re: Report on Taxi deregulation...A chance for a libertarian victory....
Post by: Kat Kanning on April 17, 2006, 06:40 AM NHFT
Thanks for the report, Steve.  Any chance I can get your article today?
Title: Re: Report on Taxi deregulation...A chance for a libertarian victory....
Post by: Happy Dude on April 17, 2006, 11:19 AM NHFT
Well the way I see the deregulated cabs is. That the one that wants it deregulated  will go up on there rates. And the one that does not want it deregulated will be the winner because they will have more business. Because there an ethical company. and want to treat there customers right.

So there for I see no problem in what is going on here. Nature will take its course.
Title: Re: Report on Taxi deregulation...A chance for a libertarian victory....
Post by: Happy Dude on April 17, 2006, 11:23 AM NHFT
our cat Alice


Theres a song about Alice. ;D ;D ;D
Title: Re: Report on Taxi deregulation...A chance for a libertarian victory....
Post by: Russell Kanning on April 17, 2006, 11:32 AM NHFT
Russell, I would like to rewrite it for print, smoothing it out a little if it is to be out on the street. As written now, it was hastly done for this forum, so it is not too professional. Needs work for hardcopy. So I will rework it for you, print it hear for comment...and copy edit it! and then to the KFP.
If you do not hurry you will get squeezed out of this next issue.