City Leaders: Taxi companies in Rockford are operating without a license

Roughly a dozen taxi companies are violating Rockford city code, that’s according to city leaders at city council’s Code and Regulation Committee meeting. 

"We think there’s somewhere between 10 and 15, but it’s really hard to say because they’re not licensed," Kerry Partridge, an attorney with the city of Rockford says.  

City leaders say operating without that license is against city ordinance. Now, they want to strengthen Rockford’s rule to crack down on those companies violating the code. 

"We want the person in the vehicle to be safe," Partridge says. "We want them to have a safe driver. Someone that’s not going to attack them." 

City attorney’s say if the ordinance is updated and drivers don’t have the proper licensing, police can get involved. 

"The police will pull them over and either issue them a ticket or they can impound the vehicle and tow them away," Partridge says.  

Some updates the ordinance could get include having all drivers go through a background check with the city and making sure their taxis are inspected.  City council has to approve all those changes, but aldermen say they need more time to see how it will impact the companies. 

"Those rules need to be spelled out so we knows what the rules are and that’s for your protection and mine as well," Alderman Frank Beach, R-10th Ward says. 

It’s a topic city leaders pushed back for another two weeks so they could hash out details with the updated ordinance as more taxi companies roll in.

Any ordinance changes would not impact services like Uber and Lfyt. Those drivers operate under different city rules. 

 

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