Monday, February 17, 2020

More Upon City Of Bellevue Ticketing & PSD Account Info & Does The City Of Seattle Have Any Verified Taxi Meter Violations?

The Bureaucratic Monster that is City of Bellevue Ordinance11.23.026

How it reads on the City of Bellevue website:

"The operator of a for hire vehicle shall not stop, stand, or park such vehicle upon any street  at any place other than in a designated taxicab stand.  This provision shall not prevent the operator of a for hire vehicle from temporarily stopping in accordance with other stopping, standing, and parking regulations at any place for the purpose of and while actually engaged in the expeditious loading and unloading of passengers.  This provision does not apply to vehicles or companies that have leases or agreements with the city for use of its rights of way."

Please notice that this law applies to all streets, avenues and roadways in Bellevue where legal parking is offered to all vehicles other than for-hire licensed vehicles:  cabs, TNC (ride-share) and flat-rate cars. I am guessing it also applies to limousines. As I said last week, this means that a cab owner cannot park his/her taxi upon a city street in front of their own Bellevue-addressed residence, it not mattering whether you live in the DT, Newport or Newcastle neighborhoods, you remaining subject to both the ticketing and the towing of your car.  It also means you cannot park in metered parking.  Though you paid your money and are legally parked, in Bellevue you are not.  Also note there is no mention of any exemptions for WAT vans or vehicles with Exempt license plates.  This ordinance is sweeping, vacuuming up everyone in its path.  Another major issue is that you will not find a posted sign telling you can't park your cab in the City of Bellevue, making this rule a kind of "invisible law," expecting you be be aware of something you would have never imagined existed.

Making this even worse, is the City of Bellevue's "Catch-22," stating in the ordinance that parking is allowed in a "designated taxicab stand."  The problem is, they don't exist, and in an email to a taxi colleague sent on February 13th, 2020, at 7:34 AM,  from City of Bellevue Transportation Department employee Cheryl Terry, states "The city does not have any of these stands."  Her telephone number is 425-452-2029, if you are seeking any kind of verification of what the City of Bellevue is doing. In short, the implied accommodation contained in the law simply doesn't exist.  And it isn't that Bellevue hasn't had the time to create cab stands, as the ordinance was revised in 2012 to include all types of for-hire operators, giving them a full eight years to address this issue.

The point then is quite obvious, the City of Bellevue is stating, minus all doubt, that taxis and cab drivers, within the entire city limits, remain unwelcome unless quickly loading and unloading passengers.  Can you legally park on a city street and eat at a restaurant?  No, you can't, the vehicle you are driving making you into a kind of last-class citizen where basic rights are forbidden.  Stop to use the bathroom? No, you can not do that either.  All you can do is step upon the gas and get the hell out of Bellevue, good riddance their parting comment.

One might suppose, as I have, that this rule is both discriminatory and illegal, directly subjecting a targeted group of individuals to treatment in violation of the US Constitution and various other equal protections of the law.  How can Code 11.23.026 be legal?

Please do all of us the favor of voicing your opinion concerning this erroneous law by contacting Bellevue's current mayor, Lynne Robinson at 425-452-7810.  Her email address is:  Be sure to reference City Code # 11.23.026.

In a few days, I will filling a complaint with the Washington State Attorney General's Office, personally taking this kind of local government  action as an attack upon an entire industry.  It's not fair.  Please join me in righting this egregious wrong.

1st Transit/MV Account now PSD's largest account

In my conversation last week with Amin, he displayed a graph illustrating that, since Jan 1, 2020, our account with Metro 1st Transit is Yellow's biggest money maker, surpassing Hopelink.  This is good news, as the MV account providing passengers essentially 24/7, making it important for all us hard working cabbies.  Another interesting feature was that the we are currently earning more carrying Highline School District students than Seattle School District kids.  Given this, don't be shy about working the southend.  It should pay off.  Also, start working Zone 498 more than you have in the past.  With the new Burien Kidney Center now open, some great trips are coming out in Zone 498.

Placement of MTI Tablets

The City of Seattle responded to my concerns. Later this month, I will be discussing the issue with those in charge. This will happen latter part of February.  Their idea is to position the tablet on the "face of the dashboard in the center of the vehicle."  Stay tuned to new developments concerning this issue.  I will also be applying to receive all data concerning meter violations.  I thought it would just be sent to me.  Government, all government, love official channels, making us fish swimming through bureaucratic canals. Oh well!

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