Boro Taxis Company Secretary, Christine Bell

Boro Taxis is to challenge the refund proposed by Middlesbrough Council following its admission that it had overcharged licence holders for many years, and is encouraging other licence holders to follow suit.

Middlesbrough Council has begun to distribute letters to licence holders detailing refunds due, however, Teesside’s largest private hire company is set to reject the Council’s offer as it does not cover the entire period during which the Council unlawfully overcharged all operators and vehicle licence holders.

The refund is the result of a complaint by Christine Bell, Boro Taxis Company Secretary, to the Local Government Ombudsman, which established the Council could not show how it had calculated its fees.

The Ombudsman ruled that the Council was required to apologise for its failings, demonstrate how it calculated its fees, and carry out a full review of the taxi fees it had charged.

Boro Taxis Company Secretary, Christine Bell, said: “We have not received a letter yet, but have seen copies sent to other licence holders. We will not be accepting the Council’s offer because it only covers the last four years, and not the many years prior to that during which the Council unlawfully charged extortionate fees, which should be included.

“It’s very disappointing to note that the Council is only telling people how much it intends to refund and asking licence holders to sign accepting the restitution payment, but is not informing them of their right to seek independent legal advice. Boro Taxis is encouraging all members of the taxi trade to take legal advice, and to stand together to make sure that Middlesbrough Council refunds all the money unlawfully charged

“This is about ordinary hardworking people in the taxi trade, many of whom are self-employed and work independently, getting back the money that was wrongfully taken from them in the first place – it’s their money, not the Council’s.”

ENDS

NEWS RELEASE: ISSUED ON BEHALF OF BORO TAXIS

CONTACT: Joss Havakin on 01325 363436

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Notes to Editors:

Boro Taxis was founded by Mohammed Bashir in 1982 with three cars.

Today the company has a fleet of more than 800 vehicles, provides employment for almost 900people in Tees Valley and handles more than 80,000 calls per week. All of Boro Taxis’ private hire drivers are licensed with the relevant licensing authorities and undergo National Vocational Qualification Level 2 training in Road Passenger Vehicle Driving. 

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Boro Taxis Company Secretary, Christine Bell
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