N.J. Operators Rally Against RIDEA-Violating Law

Posted on November 19, 2003 by LCT Staff - Also by this author - About the author

TRENTON, N.J. — New Jersey operators were working with state officials to amend a new law that requires out-of- state operators to pay $250 per year for each of their cars making runs into the Garden State.

State officials tabled enforcement of the new law after members of the Limousine Associations of New Jersey told the state Attorney General’s office that a portion of the law contradicts the federal Real Interstate Drivers Equity Act of 2001.

RIDEA excludes operators from having to pay fees to governments outside their home state.

Gov. Jim McGreevy signed the new law earlier this year as part of a budget-balancing measure. It was set to be imposed in October and would have affected out-of-state operators making runs between Newark Airport and out-of- state destinations.

The state Attorney General’s office was using its regulatory powers to revise the language of the new law so that only out-of-state operators conducting point-to-point service within the state would have to pay the $250 fee, according to Barry Lefkowitz, LANJ executive director.

Lefkowitz expected the revised law to be in place by the first of the year.

Tom McCarthy, administrative analyst for N.J. Department of Motor Vehicles, who sits on a state limousine advisory board with several members of the LANJ, alerted the LANJ to the problem with the law.

To make enforcement easier, each registered vehicle will bear a diamond sticker, similar to those given to vehicles registered by the New York City Taxi & Limousine Commission.

The LANJ is hoping enforcement will add teeth to the state’s Limo Law, which among other things requires operators to maintain $1.5 million in liability insurance and restricts sedan-based limousines to nine passengers and SUV-based limousines to 12 passengers.

The LANJ supports enforcement of the Limo Law and Lefkowitz has been educating agencies and school systems about its details.

–Neil Weiss

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