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Philly Cab Drivers Strike Over GPS Requirements

May 24, 2006

About 1,600 taxi drivers went on a one-day strike in Philadelphia last week, the Associated Press reports. Drivers are protesting new Philadelphia Parking Authority regulations, requiring installation of global positioning system units and a 250,000-mile limit for each cab. The strike coincided with a primary election and the opening of an electronics convention. Cab drivers say the mileage limit is unfair because it is lower than the 350,000-mile limit set for limousines. They are also opposed to installing GPS units, which cost about $2,600 per taxi. Operators must pay an $18 monthly maintenance fee, according to the AP report. Jim Ney, director of the Parking Authority, says the new regulations will make cabs safer. Ronald Blount, president of the Taxi Workers Alliance of Pennsylvania, said the requirements were “impoverishing the cabdrivers.” Blount adds that this strike is the first of several, saying, “we’re going to keep striking through every major convention this summer.”
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