Garodnick: 'Deception Cannot Be A Legitimate Business Practice'

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The New York City Council has voted to put the brakes on pedicab rate gouging.

Under the measure passed on Tuesday, pedicab fares will be determined only by the duration of the ride.

Bill sponsor Dan Garodnick said what should be a good experience for tourists can sometimes lead to huge fares announced only at the end of the ride.

WCBS 880’s Rich Lamb reports

“Deception cannot be a legitimate business practice in New York City,” Garodnick said. “It means the unscrupulous among them include a host of fees and surcharges in order to jack up their fares and extract as much money as possible.”

The measure requires that the fare established by the driver must be posted in standard form on the pedicab.

Drivers will only be allowed to charge by the minute and timers must hang in full view of the passengers, the bill stipulates.

“Put simply, this bill will require that a timer be used in all pedicab rides to calculate the fares during each ride,” Garodnick said. “Pedicab drivers would still be able to set the permanent rate, but it will be clearly disclosed and no other charges would be permitted. That rate will be prominently posted on the side of the pedicab. No ambiguity, no confusion.”

1010 WINS’ Stan Brooks reports

During the summer a couple from Texas said they were charged more than $442 to go just 14 blocks in a pedicab after they said the driver tacked on fees not listed at the end of the ride. That works out to more than $31 per block.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg has voiced his support for the measure.

City Council Speaker Christine Quinn said the new legislation will allow passengers to go for a ride without getting taken for a ride.

The measure takes effect in April.

Do you support the new rules, or do you think it’s up to the passenger to establish the fare in advance? Share your comments below…

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