Livery cab drivers rally in the Bronx against raise in membership fees

Livery taxi cab drivers chanted the phrase "taxi drivers united will not be defeated" Friday as they protested a raise in base costs by the NYS Federation of Taxi Drivers.

The federation has raised the base cost for drivers by $10, bringing the total up to $60 a week. Drivers say the rising gas prices and insurance costs make it tough enough to earn a living. The drivers say they feel like they are being taken advantage of.

After the rally, the drivers got back into their cabs and drove single file to each livery base in the Bronx with hopes of driving their message home to the federation.

Federation officials dismissed the rally calling it ignorant, stupid and immature. Earlier this month, the livery cab fares went up $1. Federation president Fernando Mateo told News 12 The Bronx drivers keep 95 percent of what they make. With the fare increase they make $150 to $200 more per week. So $10 more a month is an insignificant amount to keep the place they work in business.

Still, some drivers say they refuse to pay the increase and say they may start their own union.

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