Forest Park will now allow older taxicabs to operate in the village, citing improved safety as the reason for the change.
The village council voted 5-0, March 11, to extend the maximum age of taxicabs licensed to operate in Forest Park from eight to 10 years, and Administrator Tim Gillian said the village will continue inspections on the older vehicles.
Gillian said village officials were concerned that those who own older taxicabs would become Uber or Lyft drivers if their vehicles were not eligible to continue as taxicabs due to their age. He noted that Uber and Lyft vehicles are not subject to annual inspections, implying that safety could be compromised. Gillian also said the recommendation to change the ordinance followed conversations with taxicab company officials.
"It seemed to be a reasonable request," he said.
Mayor Anthony Calderone concurred, noting that taxicabs are inspected by Forest Park police officers when the licenses are renewed.
Gillian noted that Department of Transportation inspections also are required for taxicabs and not for Uber or Lyft vehicles.
Under the revised ordinance, no vehicle shall be licensed as a taxicab upon application or renewal unless it is less than 10 years old at the time of application. The change takes effect in fiscal year 2020.
Robert J. Lifka