Gotta Go taxi at the scene of Hadley Hoe Down last fall when they had 12 taxis, now down to only two in Amherst
The Wild Wild West days for the taxi industry in Amherst seem to be over. If only the rental housing market were as quick to respond to regulatory pressures.
Last night Town Manager John Musante reported to his bosses, the five-member Select Board, that nine taxi companies have applied for and been approved 2013 town licenses, down from a dozen in 2011.
But the h-u-g-e difference is in number of taxi vehicles approved for road service that have passed an extensive inspection process: 61 last year, down to only 19 this year.
When UMass is in session, weekend late evenings start to resemble a three ring circus clown act with the number of young people packed into taxis, which careen around town like their were firefighters on the way to major structure fire.
The towns new insistance on a meter system which requires an expensive machine in each taxi accounts for the low number of units on the road this year. In business it's called a "barrier to entry".
Now any Tom, Dick or Sally will think twice before simply turning their personal vehicle into a taxi.