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Tuesday, Sep 23, 2014
Commentary

Public Transportation Commission provides vital services

Published:

I am writing in response to your editorial “Legislation would get meddlesome PTC out of the way” (Our Views, Nov. 5). I would like to highlight the importance of retaining the Public Transportation Commission and implementing the sweeping policy reforms underway.

The PTC is committed to working for the residents and visitors of Hillsborough County. The inspections of more than 2,100 vehicles and background checks for more than 3,000 drivers are essential to ensuring safe standards for the riding public.

Insurance requirements are in place to ensure the riding public is protected in the event of an accident.

Everyone deserve a safe, clean, newer-model vehicle operated by a licensed driver who has submitted to a criminal background check and driving record check.

The PTC board is working closely with its interim executive director, Kevin Jackson, on reviewing and implementing new and improved operational guidelines. Jackson has an exemplary record in the consumer protection arena and is thoroughly examining the organization to ensure quality best practices for ethical operations, accountability and transparency.

The county’s internal performance auditor has recently completed an audit plan, and the PTC will move forward with completing the audit and implementing the management recommendations. The audit plan and sweeping new PTC policies will be brought forward at Wednesday’s meeting. Action taken by the PTC will continue to improve the agency’s process, accountability, culture and responsiveness to the industry we regulate and the consumers we serve.

The November PTC meeting will also include a technology workshop to discuss new and emerging technologies in the vehicle-for-hire industry. Small and large businesses have been invited, and we look forward to working together to make the region’s taxicab and limousine service more consumer friendly.

The PTC is dedicated to working with all of the stakeholders to encourage free enterprise and quality, safe consumer services to the riding public.

Abolishing the PTC and the important safety regulations it stands for is unnecessary and needlessly puts consumers at risk.

Hillsborough County Commissioner Victor Crist is chairman of the county’s Public Transportation Commission.

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