New bylaw irks cab drivers
Need for details called excessive by those in a hurry

by Amber Fandrick
Northern News Services

NNSL (Nov 14/97) - A new city bylaw has not been embraced with open arms by Yellowknife's cab drivers.

The bylaw, which came into affect last Thursday, requires that drivers fill out a daily log sheet.

Each sheet is to include date, taxi number, name of driver, points of embarkment and disembarkment, time, fare and number of passengers.

"It is so stupid. It takes time. People always tell me 'I am in a rush!' What do I tell them? 'Wait, I have to fill out my logbook?' So stupid, no one asked me about this," said Nikola Jovic, a City Cab driver.

Other taxi industry employees seem to share the sentiments.

"We keep trip sheets in the office of where people are picked up. It is a waste of time on drivers and office staff," said YK Cab manager Dorothy Luzny.

But Yellowknife's municipal bylaw enforcement department stands behind its decision to enforce the logbook rule.

According to supervisory constable Larry Webber, views and opinions were discussed with the works and public safety committee. There were open meetings in which all participated, including the bylaw department, cab companies and drivers, he said.

"I was at those meetings, and I did not agree with it," said Sunshine driver, Joseph Hashi.

The bylaw officially came into effect Sept. 1, but the city allowed a two-month implementation period in order for cab drivers to become better acquainted with the new rule.

"This bylaw is a result of co-operation with cab companies and wanting to bring our bylaw level into enforcement and compliance with other bylaws around the country.

We want to meet the same specifications as other cities such as Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver," added Webber.

A driver must have the log in his car at all times. It must be filled out according to the bylaw. A violation of this will result in a $100 fine. An officer can stop a cab at any given time and request to see a driver's log.

"Why are they doing this? I don't like it, it is just a kind of trouble," said YK Cab driver, Ahmad Ali.

But Webber sees it differently. "All we're doing is enforcing what they (cab companies and drivers) agreed to with the work and public safety committee in June."