Categorized | National News

Taxi Drivers Excited Over Licence Promise

Bahamian taxi drivers said they are more than ecstatic about the Free National Movement’s (FNM) promise to allow provisions for more taxi drivers to own their own licence plates.

According to the Speech from the Throne, read last Wednesday, the Minnis led administration has pledged that during its five year term in office it will review and give consideration to granting those persons who have been in the industry for a significant amount of time, licence plate ownership.

Former policeman and now owner of his own franchise, John Gator, stationed at the Melia Resort Hotel, told The Bahama Journal that this promise would provide drivers numerous opportunities to enhance their fleets.

“This would empower drivers to go to the next level,” he said.

“Especially when we want to upgrade our vehicles, the bank wouldn’t have a problem giving us a loan. Also I would be able to will it to my family and leave it to my family if I pass before them.”

Sabrina Higgs, who has also been in the business for more than 15 years, and Cordell Victor, for five years, were also optimistic of the FNM’s promise.

“It’s a long time overdue,” said Mrs. Higgs.

“When I came into the field in 89′, I came in it wanting to be my own boss. It will benefit everybody tremendously because regardless of if a driver made more or less during the week they still have to pay their boss. A lot of drivers are doing this for themselves.”

“If I get my own plate, I wouldn’t have to pay every month,” said Mr. Victor.

“But I don’t know if they would give me a plate because I’m too young.”

Mr. Gator, who has been a taxi driver for over 30 years and has sent three children to college from his work, however added that there is lots of room for that sector to be further approved.

“There are a lot of us and the buses now seem to be getting the most business now,” he said.

“It used to be more lucrative when we didn’t have much tour buses on the road. For instance, down at the dock, the tour buses are taking away most of the business that was supposed to be there for the small businessman.”

Mr. Gator said that is something that needs to be re regulated and his colleagues agreed.

“Not only the tour bus, but you have the tour car and hackers. People who say they are a taxi, but they are not,” said Mrs. Higgs.

“So the tour bus, the tour car and even the jitneys, they all come. So with us taxi drivers right now, we get the remnants.”

As it stands, there are no concrete regulations or age restrictions on who can own taxi licence plates.

Written by Jones Bahamas

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