City of Toronto providing financial relief for taxicab industry

As part of the 2021 budget approval process, Toronto City Council voted to provide a temporary reduction in the renewal fees and regulatory charges for Taxicab and Limousine Vehicle-for-Hire licensing categories. This initiative will assist up to 8,670 drivers in the city.

In light of the financial pressures residents and businesses are facing as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the City has been working to find ways to reduce costs for Torontonians. The taxicab and limousine industry has experienced significant service reductions this year, and the City is dedicated to helping support its recovery.

This $2.47 million support will enable the following:
• a 50 percent reduction of the renewal fees, until further City Council direction, with a credit provided for any renewal fees due and paid following January 1, 2021 for the taxicab industry;
• a temporary reduction in the regulatory charges for the Vehicle-for-Hire Accessibility Fund Program by 75 percent for 2021;
• a reinstatement of any expired and cancelled taxicab licences from 2020 for the non-payment of renewal fees and extension of the deadline for payment until December 31, 2021; and
• a suspension of the cancellation of vehicle-for-hire licences for non-payment of renewal fees in 2021, with a report back on a payment-deferral application process.

For more information on taxi licencing, visit: https://www.toronto.ca/services-payments/permits-licences-bylaws/taxis/.

Residents are encouraged to learn more about the impact of their property tax investment by viewing the reports and presentations available at http://www.toronto.ca/budget.

Quotes:

“We are doing everything we can as a City government to help residents and businesses get through these tough times. I want to thank councillors for working together to provide some relief for taxi drivers – we know the taxicab industry has been hit hard by the pandemic.  This is much-needed relief for the industry and I’m glad the City can offer some support at this time.”
– Mayor John Tory

“Many Toronto businesses, including the taxicab industry, have experienced substantial financial distress over the last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This reduction in fees and charges will help support the industry’s recovery.”
– Councillor Paul Ainslie (Scarborough-Guildwood), Chair of the General Government and Licensing Committee

“Toronto’s Taxicab industry has been experiencing economic hardship for over a decade, which has only been accelerated and exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. I am grateful that we are able to provide meaningful support in these unprecedented times.”
– Councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam (Toronto Centre)

“The Taxi Industry is a key sector of our local economy in North Etobicoke, and a critical part of Toronto’s ground transportation network. Their financial pressures have existed long before COVID-19, particularly due to a harsh regulatory environment where they face licensing renewal fees approximately four times higher than other businesses. However, with 80-90% of their fleet off the road, COVID-19 has gravely exacerbated the financial issues faced by the industry. With that in mind, I am pleased with City Council’s overwhelming vote to provide the industry a lifeline and bring much-needed relief to taxi drivers across our city.”
– Councillor Michael Ford (Etobicoke-North)

SOURCE  City of Toronto

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