Mayor Tom Bradley ordered city transportation officials Friday to determine what changes must be made in city ordinances to permit a taxicab company to offer $10 discount ride vouchers to returning Persian Gulf troops and their families.
Bradley responded to a preliminary ruling by a transportation staffer who held that Bell Cab Co-Op could not offer discount rides because city regulations forbid them.
“I want you to pursue this proposal, to see what city ordinances need to be modified in order to allow the flexibility to offer discounts in these extraordinary cases,” the mayor said in a letter to Ed Rowe, head of the city Transportation Department.
Bradley urged the officials to act promptly. He noted that Los Angeles residents will demonstrate their support for returning troops with a parade along Hollywood Boulevard on May 19.
“It (the changes) would send a strong signal that people throughout the city, in the private and public sector, want to provide a rousing welcome home to our troops,” Bradley said.
Tom Conner, assistant general manager of the Transportation Department, said the department will move quickly to recommend changes permitting Bell Cab Co-Op, along with the city’s seven other authorized cab companies, to offer discount rides.
Conner expects the suggested amendments to be presented to the Transportation Commission on April 11, then go to the City Council soon afterward. If council members and the mayor agree, Conner thinks the changes could be in effect by early May.