Greater Napanee council to consider first taxi rate increase since 2014

Staff recommendation calls for 20-per-cent rate hike

Adam Bramburger

Beaver Staff

Greater Napanee council is poised to discuss an increase in taxi fares Tuesday evening.

In what would be the first change in just over three years, staff is recommending a 20-per-cent increase in the urban set rate listed in Schedule B of the bylaw allowing council to licence, regulate, and govern taxicab owners and drivers.  That would mean a $2 increase in set fares within the Napanee urban area — from $10 to $12.  Seniors would still receive a $1 discount, with their set rate increasing from $9 to $11.

Destinations outside Napanee included in Schedule B-1 of the bylaw would also increase by 20 per cent under the proposed changes. Among common destinations: a one-way trip to Belleville or Kingston would increase from $67.50 to $81; a trip to the Toronto airport would rise from $520 to $624; a trip to Tamworth would increase from $47 top $56; and a trip to Deseronto would increase from $20 to $24.

Staff is also recommending the per-kilometre rate outside Napanee (for destinations not specifically outlined in Schedule B-1) increase from $1.90 to $2.25  which is slightly less than $20 per cent.

Stops while en route would increase from $3 per every five minutes stopped to $4. That increased stop fee would also be applied for delivery calls. Other waiting by drivers would be increased from $45 an hour to $54.

According to a report prepared by clerk Susan Beckel, staff considered the recent adoption of provincial minimum wage legislation in making its recommendations.

“On. Nov 22, 2017 the province passed Bill 148, which increases the minimum wage in Ontario from $11.40 to $14, effective Jan. 1, 2018,” Beckel wrote. “Given this significant increase, the cost of fuel and maintenance and that taxi rates and fares have not increased since June 2014, staff is recommending that Schedule B and Schedule B-1 to the town’s taxi bylaw be amended to increase the taxi rate and fares.”

If council agrees to the proposed increases, the increases would not come in to effect right away. Staff would be required to draft an amending bylaw for future council consideration and adequate public notice would be required prior to the passing of that bylaw.

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