Page 1 of 2
(L to R) KLA members in from September meeting at Skaggs Limousine in Elizabethtown: David Bryant (Ambassador Limousine, Louisville), BJ Burton (Limos by Knight, Owensboro), Val Newton (Regal Limousine, Benton), Pat Burton (Limos by Knight), Tom Burton (Limos by Knight), Carey Fieldhouse, President (R & R Limousine, Louisville), David Dunaway (Skaggs Limousine), NeVelle Skaggs, Vice President (Skaggs Limousine), Kent Sparks, Secretary (Lake Cumberland Limousine, Jamestown), Todd Roberts (JACO Limousine, London), Justin Newton (Regal Limousine).
LOUISVILLE, KY — With only 14 full-time members, the Kentucky Limousine Association pursues an agenda and level of service to maximum effect.
From a media-savvy strategy, to publishing a position paper, to working with regulatory agencies and state legislators, the KLA makes sure it stays practical and focused on the business interests of its small- to medium-size limousine operations. Except for Louisville, operators serve clients mostly in small towns and cities.
Among key accomplishments, the KLA recently finished production on its first-ever video PSA that will air on several local TV stations in the state and an audio PSA already airing on some radio stations. The KLA also is getting the PSA aired on the TV networks of high schools around the state. The PSAs explain the value of doing business with legal, reputable, quality operators in a state besieged with illegal gypsies, explains KLA President Carey Fieldhouse.
“Our focus is to try and elevate the image of the limousine operator and make sure we are well represented in the media,” Fieldhouse says. “Gypsy operators make us look bad. The public mistakenly believes that’s what the limo business is like. We want the limousine business in Kentucky to make us look good.”
The KLA can deter illegal limo business by educating the public on its safety dangers, Fieldhouse says. “I’ve taken calls myself from people who say, ‘Our chauffeur just showed up and he’s drunk. Can you send a car?’”
Hand-in-hand with a media message, the KLA works with law enforcement agencies and regulators to make sure gypsy operators are pursued and shut down. “You have to attack the gypsy operators from the ground up and the top down,” Fieldhouse says.
Last March, KLA leaders gathered federal, state and local agencies that regulate ground transportation in one meeting so that representatives could get on the same page about regulations while better understanding the nature of the limousine industry, Fieldhouse says.
As part of that effort, the association finished a letter in July that includes KRS (Kentucky Regulatory Statues) 281.615 stating that it is illegal to knowingly use an unlicensed limousine service. Members can show that letter to parties or entities that use gypsy services. “We can take the form letter to general managers showing that the service they use does not have operating authority,” Fieldhouse says. “It gives us ammunition to deal with complacent hoteliers and businesses.”