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GNYTA Complaint

GNYTA Complaint

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Published by dana_rubinstein

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Published by: dana_rubinstein on May 30, 2012
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05/30/2012

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SUPREMECOURTOFTHESTATEOFNEWYORKCOUNTYOFNEWYORK
x
GREATERNEWYORKTAXIASSOCIATION,andEVGENYFREIDMAN,Plaintiffs,-against-THESTATEOFNEWYORK,THENEWYORKSTATEASSEMBLY,THENEWYORKSTATESENATE,ANDREWM.CUOMO,inhisofficialcapacityasGovernorofNewYork,THECITYOFNEWYORK,MICHAELR.BLOOMBERG,inhisofficialcapacityasMayoroftheCityofNewYork,theNEWYORKCITYTAXIANDLIMOUSINECOMMISSION,acharter-mandatedagency,andDAVIDYASSKY,inhisofficialcapacityasChairmanandCommissioneroftheNewYorkCityTaxiandLimousineCommission,IndexNo.
I
02.1~2012
COlVlPLAINT
Defendants.
x
Plaintiffs,byandthroughtheirattomeys,Mintz
&
GoldLLP,fortheircomplaintallegeasfollows:
PRELIMINARYSTATEMENT
1.TheplaintiffGreaterNewYorkTaxiAssociation("GNYTA")isanassociationrepresentingtheownersofapproximately1500taxicabmedallionsoperatinginNewYorkCity.2.Inthisaction,GNYTAandoneofitsmembers,seekadeclarationthatarecentlyenactedstatelawdirectlyaffectingtherightsofmedallionownersisunconstitutionalundertheNewYorkStateConstitution.
In
addition,theregulationspromulgatedbythedefendantNew
 
YorkCityTaxiandLimousineCommission(the"TLC")arenotauthorizedbythechallengedstatuteandhenceare
ultravires.
Plaintiffsalsoseekaninjunctionprohibitingdefendantsfromcarryingoutanyactsinfurtheranceoftheunconstitutionallaw.3.Thelaw,Chapter9oftheLawsof2012(Assembly8691A1Senate
6118A)
(the
"HailAct"),radicallyaltersthelicensingandregulatorysystemgoverningtheNewYorkCitymedalliontaxicabandfor-hirevehicleindustries.Clearly,theHailActisalawthateffectsandregulatesanindustryconfinedtoNewYorkCity,andwaspasseddespitethefactthattheNewYorkCityCouncil(the"CityCouncil")neverprovidedaHomeRulemessagesupportingthelaw,asrequiredbytheNewYorkStateConstitution.4.TheHailActprovidesfor18,000licenses("HAILLicenses"),whichallowlicenseholderstoacceptstreethailsinNewYorkCityoutsideofManhattan'scentralbusinessdistrict,andoutsideofthecity'stwomajorairports.Thus,thelawusurpslocallawspassedbytheCityCouncilauthorizingonlymedalliontaxicabdrivers,andnotliverydrivers,topickuppassengershailingvehiclesonthestreet.5.TheHailActgoesbeyondmerelyauthorizingaformerlyprohibitedactivity.TheenactmentrepresentsanattemptbydefendantMayorMichaelR.Bloomberg("Bloomberg"),aidedbytheStateLegislature,tocircumventthelocallegislativeprocessandtheCityCouncil,whichdidnotsupportthesechangestothetaxicabandliveryindustries.6.Bloomberginitiallyproposedthislegislationinhis2011"StateoftheCity"address,andtheTLCatthattimeadmittedthatitcouldonlybecomelawifitgarneredsupportfromtheCityCouncil.Whenitbecameclear,however,thatsuchsupportwouldnotbeforthcoming,BloomberginitiatedaconcertedlobbyingefforttoconvincetheStateLegislaturetopasstheHailActwithoutCityCouncilapproval.
2
 
7.NotwithstandingthelackofCityCouncilapprovalandarequestbythatlocallegislativebodyfortheStatetoact,theHailActrepresentsadrasticchangeintheregulationoftaxisandliveriesexclusivelywithinNewYorkCity.8.Inaddition,theTLClacksboththefundingandthewilltoproperlyenforcetheHailAct'sprovisions.TheTLChasproposedtoaddasmallnumberofenforcementagents;thisincrease,however,willstillmakeitvirtuallyimpossiblefortheTLCtopreventHAILlicensedliverydriversfrompickingupstreethailpassengersinthezonereservedforthemedallioncabs.Indeed,thenumberofenforcementagentswillstillbefarbelowthenumberofagentsemployedduringtheDinkinsadministration,whentherewerefarfewercabsandliverycarsoperating.9.Inaddition,thelackofenforcementresourceswillenabletheliverycarstooperatewithoutpropermeters,GPS,orcreditcardmachinesthatthenewlaw'sproponentsaretoutingassignificantbenefitsoftheHailAct.ThelackoffundingorwilltoproperlyenforcetheHailActfurtherdemonstrateswhytheactviolatestheHomeRuleprovisionoftheStateConstitution.10.Inshort,theHailAct(i)disregardstheNewYorkCitygovernmentalseparationofpowersenshrinedintheCityCharter,shiftingthepowertodeterminethenumberoftaxicabsandliveriesontheroadfromtheCityCounciltotheMayorandhisTLC;(ii)impingesontheCityofNewYork'sauthoritytoregulatethenumberoftaxicabsandliveryvehiclesonNewYorkCitystreets;and(iii)allocatesrevenuesfromtheCity'slimitedbudgetwithoutconsultingthelocallegislativebodyorcomplyingwithanyCitybudgetaryprocedures.Yet,theCityCouncilneverprovidedaHomeRuleMessagesupportingthislegislation.Therefore,theHailActviolatestheHomeRuleProvisionoftheNewYorkStateConstitution.11.TheHailActalsounfairlyfavorsonegroupoveranotherinviolationoftheNew3

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