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KC Cabbies Cry Foul, File Federal Suit


A collection of Kansas City cab drivers has sued city government in federal court trying to overturn the ordinance that regulates taxicab operation.  Drivers claim regulations are unconstitutional and discriminate.

Unhappy drivers allege the current rules keep independents from striking out on their own and favor the nine existing taxicab companies which, the pleadings say, hold all 547 cab permits issued by the City of Kansas City.

Plaintiffs call it a closed system that allows companies to exploit them.  

The suit is in the name of the Kansas City Taxicab Drivers Association which claims about 250 members. Their attorney, Mark Goodman says the drivers can barely make a living, having to pay cab companies as much as $260 a week for permitting.

Goodman says he has met with members of the city council and had no satisfaction—“the city doesn’t want to hear about it. They say the system’s fine.  I say the system is exploitive and isn’t fine.”

City Attorney Bill Geary declined comment until he had read the court filing.

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