OCEANSIDE — There was no discussion prior to a unanimous vote by City Council to introduce new taxicab rules at its Wednesday meeting.
Council OK’d requirements for taxicab companies to have 10 cabs in their fleet, one ADA compliant cab to serve patrons in wheelchairs, a GPS system and fire extinguisher on board; other requirements include a vehicle age limit of 7 years, and the ability to accept credit card payments from customers.
The changes to the existing rules, which were set in 1982, were made to provide better and safer citywide cab service.
There was extensive discussion at the Aug.15 council meeting on what rules should be included to provide better service for seniors and tourists.
Council members asked for GPS systems to be required to avoid a line up of cabs at pickup sites.
It was noted by council that requiring 10 percent of cabs in fleets be ADA compliant was costly to companies, but fitted city needs.
“We made the changes we talked about,” Councilwoman Esther Sanchez said.
Also at the meeting, council approved the increase of business fees for cab companies that were introduced at the Aug. 15 session.
First year application fees will increase from $25 to $475, vehicle license fees will jump from $0 to $165 and inspection fees will increase from $0 to $100. Companies operating in Oceanside will pay first year fees beginning this year under the new rules.
Renewal fees will be a bit lower, with application renewal fees at $360, a license renewal fee at $124 and inspection renewal fees at $50.
Provisions to protect taxicab franchises, mode of operation and distinction color of fleets are included and unchanged in the revised rules. Currently Yellow Cab and 24-7 Taxi Cab serve Oceanside.