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LTFRB brings down taxi flag-down rate by P10
By Robertzon Ramirez (The Philippine Star) | Updated March 7, 2015 - 12:00am
MANILA, Philippines - A provisional P10-rollback in the flag-down rate of all taxicabs will take effect on Monday, the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) said yesterday.
LTFRB said the flag-down taxi fare will be reduced to P30 from the current P40, while the start-up fare of airport taxis will be reduced to P60 from P70. But there is no fare reduction for every succeeding 300 meters.
LTFRB chairman Winston Ginez said in a press conference the rollback stemmed from the “prevailing low prices of oil in the world market.” Former LTFRB member and Negros Oriental Rep. Manuel Iway also petitioned the board to reduce the flag-down fare.
“The fare reduction will be automatically imposed on Monday without any documents needed from the LTFRB,” Ginez added.
LTFRB board member Ariel Inton said since the rollback is still provisional, the rollback is not yet activated in the taxi meters. The board appeals to taxi operators and drivers to implement the rollback by deducting P10 from the fare.
Under the Joint Administrative Order No. 2014-01 of the LTFRB and the Land Transportation Office, a penalty of P5,000 will be imposed on taxi operators and drivers who violate the directive.
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Ginez also urged passengers to report non-compliant taxi drivers to the LTFRB.
But taxi operators stood firm that they will appeal the LTRFB’s decision to impose a rollback.
The Association of Taxi Operators in Manila (ATOM) complained that the reduced boundaries of taxicabs will affect the drivers’ take-home pay.
ATOM spokesman Pablo Sarmiento said that the group was not consulted by the LTFRB when it made the “unfair” decision and the board should have considered the recent oil price hike.
Ginez belied Sarmiento’s statement, saying that the LTFRB organized a hearing and regional consultations, the results of which were published in major national newspapers before it approved the P10 fare cut. All groups were also asked to submit their oppositions.
“If they were not able to attend the hearing, it is no longer our problem,” Ginez added.