Taxi airport agreement causing a headache for customers and cab companies

Only Yellow Cab can park and wait for customers

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - After a long day of traveling, the last thing people want to do is wait for a taxi. However, an agreement between Yellow cab and Meadows Field Airport is causing a headache for customers and other cab companies.

Yellow cab in Bakersfield has an exclusive contract with Meadows Field Airport that only gives them the right to park outside the terminal to wait for customers.

"We should be like any other airport in the United States when someone leaves the terminal, they should be able to step into a taxi cab and travel on. People have been flying all day and they don't need to wait for cabs," Jeff Russisky, owner of Blue Star taxi, said.

If a traveler needs to call a cab, they're referred to the Yellow cab phone number that is posted at the airport. However, some say they have waited up to 20 minutes before a Yellow cab arrives and the other taxi companies are only allowed to drive through the terminal and can even be fined if they're caught parking.

"Even security will come out and tell you to move immediately," Tony, a cab driver at ABC cab, said.

Richard Strickland, director of airports for Kern County, said Yellow cab won the right to park at the airport through a competitive bid process.

"I'll have staff look into whether Yellow cab is there when they're suppose to be there for arriving flights," Strickland said.

Strickland said another competitive bid will take place when the agreement expires in June 2014, but customers said the extra competition would be good for customer service.

"It would keep everybody on their toes and I would get a better deal as a customer with more competition," Jan Lea, a customer, said.

"There are a lot of us who are willing to pay and we just want that opportunity," Russisky said.

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