Thursday, August 16, 2007

Meters or Zones?

District of Columbia is considering the old meter vs. zone fare question again. (actually Congress who likes every once & a while likes to flex its muscles by dictating policy TO the people who live here -- always popular with the population. Wouldn't you enjoy having people who are there for a few years telling your community how to live?)

"The legislation is the latest version of a measure that Sen. Carl Levin has backed since the 1980s. The Michigan Democrat opposes the District's zone fare system, which can be confusing to both residents and visitors. The rider usually was removed before passage of the budget bill, but this year, it survived votes in the House and Senate, and President George W. Bush is expected to sign it. Outgoing Mayor Anthony Williams has been studying meters, but Democratic mayoral nominee Adrian Fenty hasn't said whether he'd require them as mayor.Fenty -- who could take office in January -- is still awaiting the city's study on meter use, but sources have said he favors switching to meters as more simple and fair."

The majority of cab drivers seem to favor the zone system; with Congress, their hangers & tourists favoring meters. Personally I don't know that it would make much difference to me. Congress folk & friends move around downtown, where they get a flat rate of $7.50 whether they're going 3 blocks or 20. With a meter, those going only a few blocks would get a better deal. For our poorer population that mostly lives to the east & south of the center of town, the zone system lets them know exactly what they will pay, so they don't have to worry about running out of money before they get home.

As always, interesting to watch this develop.

Friday, August 03, 2007


Ok, I know that there must be some underhanded dealings going on with at least a few DC cabs and vehicle inspections. (duh, right?) LOL - today we were in a cab that was falling apart bit by bit. We made the whole trip with the right blinker light on, a driver trying to avoid stopping because every time we stopped, the car almost needed us out pushing it to start it again. We went up a small "hill" and I thought the car was just going to die. And inside, yikes! My favorite was the covering on the roof above our heads was stapled to the side of the car above the windows on each side. And the AC was on, and it was ... well lukewarm would be a compliment.

As my boss observed, her car flunked an inspection because the passenger side windshield wiper didn't work as well as the other one!