Selena Birk, the director of Regulatory Compliance and Standards Division at LAX, and a team of police officers updated GCLA members of regulatory and enforcment matters Tuesday, March 11, 2014.
LOS ANGELES -- A regulatory manager from the Los Angeles International Airport addressed three long-running problems for limo operators serving LAX during the March 11 member meeting of the Greater California Livery Association.
Selena Birk, the director of Regulatory Compliance and Standards Division at LAX, updated members on several developments at the airport related to charter party carriers. Her division is responsible for ground transportation, permits, landside administration, regulatory compliance and emergency management sections for Los Angeles World Airports.
Item: 1: Charter-Party Carrier Lot: Airport staff are running a second manned booth to distribute trip tickets for chauffeured vehicles picking up passengers at LAX. The added staffing from 6:30 a.m. to Midnight should cut back on long vehicle lines and wait times. LAX staff wants to eventually eliminate the booths and resort to automatic billing via the required transponders on all chauffeured vehicles that access the airport property. The airport now has 2,500 limousine companies registered in its system.
Item 2: Transportation Network Companies: LAX is inundated with applications from single-vehicle operators affiliated with TNCs, such as Uber, Sidecar and Lyft. In the last six to eight months, the average number of monthly applications has climbed from 25-30 per month to 50-70. Like all local and airport regulatory bodies, LAX is awaiting a final ruling from the California Public Utilities Commission on a permanent set of regulations governing TNCs. Birk told GCLA members that she and her staff are well aware of the compliance challenges for limo operators, which involve state, local and insurance requirements. A team of enforcement officers from LAX reported that they are citing non-compliant TNC operators as much as possible given resources, but that citations of such violators has risen.
Item 3: Special Olympics transportation: Los Angeles will be hosting the 2015 Special Olympics, the largest event to the held in the area since the 1984 Olympics. The estimated 500,000 visitors will bring demand for ground transportation, including many ADA-accessible chauffeured vehicles, Birk said. Most of the athletic events will be held on the campuses of UCLA and USC.
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Phil Hartz, CEO of SoCal Professional Vehicles, details new vehicles being sold by the Acton Fleet Sales/Penske network at GCLA meeting.
Acton Fleet Sales/SoCal Penske Professional Vehicles is getting ready for its first shipments of 2015 Chevrolet Suburban, Tahoe, and Escalade SUV models during the month of April, said Phil Hartz, CEO of SoCal Penske Professional Vehicles. The first Suburbans arrive in early April and the Escalades later in the month. Acton/Penske debuted the 2015 Chevrolet Suburban to limo operators at the International LCT Show in Las Vegas Feb. 16-18 while Cadillac Professional Vehicles unveiled the 2015 Cadillac Escalade to operators on Oct. 27, 2013 at LCT Show East in Atlantic City, N.J. The 2015 SUV models from GM represent a new-generation body styling and added amenities.
Acton/Penske also is working on a deal with Quality Coachworks in Ontario, Calif. and Chrylser Group to make an extended livery version of the Chrysler 300 sedan, Hartz said. A prototype with seven inches of added legroom was unveiled a.
Acton/Penske also is seeing more sales of its Cadillac XTS-L sedan model, produced with Specialty Vehicle Group.
The national chauffeured vehicle sales distributor also saw heavy foot traffic and interest in its vehicle displays at the Show . Despite having a sales team of nine people at the Show, the company could have used nine more, given the demand, Hartz said.
-- Martin Romjue, LCT editor