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I-Team Special Report: Fare Warning Part II

Updated: Tuesday, February 25, 2014 |
I-Team Special Report: Fare Warning Part II story image
KALAMAZOO, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) - In a special report, the Newschannel 3 I-Team determined that the Kalamazoo cab industry was a largely unregulated industry with no accountability or oversight.

After seeing the results of our investigation, state and local leaders say they want to make changes.

We brought what we found to Kalamazoo Mayor Bobby Hopewell and other city officials.

“I do believe this has to be addressed because it's the right thing for a city and for our county and community to do and we have to find a way to address it," says Hopewell.

But the I-Team uncovered that even though it's cities that have to deal with bad taxi service there’s little they can do about it on their own because of the loophole in the state law.

“It was designed with Detroit in mind but now it doesn't apply to any community in Michigan, well maybe that means we need to take another look at it, perhaps its slipped into being a bit outdated and problematic," says State Representative Sean McCann.

McCann says he wants to look at updating the state laws.
As it's written now the "State Limousine Transportation Act" says a limo carrier has to follow city laws only when, "within a city with a population of 750,000 or more." Right now no city in Michigan is that large and so none of them can regulate limos.

“I want to look into it further, see if it’s gotten out of date and see if there’s a way cities and the state can work together to provide this service," says McCann.

And Kalamazoo city commissioners have already started the process of looking into changes.

"Our city attorney is reviewing the ordinances we already have on the books, we're looking at where the gaps are, we're looking at what's going on in the other cities, how are they containing these different things, and we're gonna come up with a reasonable solution," says Cooney.

"We have to find a way to address it and the only way we're going to do that is working with legislators and governor’s office to look at this," says Hopewell.
Even though there are not a lot of regulations on limos they are still required to register with the state and you can check the state website to make sure the one you use is on the list. They also need to have a M-DOT sticker in the back window to show they at least have a state chauffeur's license.

To check out a list of authorized limousine carriers by county, click here.
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