Recently, officials from local cab companies met with Mayor Byron Brown to discuss how taxi companies and ridesharing companies can coexist in the city of Buffalo. Lipsitz Green senior partner Robert Boreanaz, who represents the taxi companies, spoke to WBEN about this meeting and what the future of Buffalo’s transportation environment could look like. The full story is available on the WBEN website.
Meeting “a first step”
Mr. Boreanaz described the meeting with Mayor Brown as “a first step,” saying, “I think the mayor learned today that there is not a level playing field between [transportation network companies] and the taxi industry.” He went on to say that if “the taxi companies go down, the consumers will be hurt. Those who don’t have credit cards, those who live paycheck to paycheck that need to go places late at night when TNCs are not going to be around.” Mr. Boreanaz explained that, if the playing field between ridesharing companies and taxi companies is not leveled, “the taxi industry in Western New York and the city of Buffalo will go right down the tubes. And folks in the inner city, folks working late at night in a hospital that need a ride home, or that have to go to the hospital, they’re not going to have a taxi company to call.”
Advocating for taxi companies
“This is an issue that we want the city to address,” Mr. Boreanaz said. “The city regulates the tax companies that operate within the city and we want the city to be responsible to its citizens and to its business owners and the families those business owners support.”
Although no future meeting has been scheduled at this point, Mr. Boreanaz said that Mayor Brown has agreed to meet again. “We think a meeting down the line will bring the mayor as an advocate for taxi companies,” he said. “We’re hopeful that he becomes an advocate not only for taxi companies but for the folks that use the taxi companies.”
About Robert L. Boreanaz
Mr. Boreanaz, a member of Lipsitz Green Scime Cambria’s Labor and Employment Practice Area, focuses his on union-side labor law and plaintiff-side employment law. He has extensive trial experience, arguing before state, appellate, and federal courts.