An Orleans Parish judge has ruled that New Orleans cab drivers can't sue to force Mayor Mitch Landrieu's administration to enforce the city's taxicab inspection requirements against drivers for ride-booking services such as Uber and Lyft.
In a recent written order, Civil District Court Judge Christopher Bruno tossed out a lawsuit filed by two cab drivers against the city and Department of Safety and Permits Director Jared Munster.
The suit challenged what it described as the city's "piecemeal enforcement" of inspection requirements for for-hire vehicles, arguing that it was unfair to apply those $50 inspections to taxi drivers while ignoring them for drivers of private vehicles who pick up fares in the city.
A pair of New Orleans taxi drivers sued the city on Wednesday, asking a judge to force drive…
The taxicab inspections go beyond the brake-tag inspections that all vehicle owners in the city must undergo to operate. They include scrutiny of vehicle interiors, window tinting, spare tires, door handles, meters and other features.
Failure to pass the inspection requires an additional $50 reinspection fee, along with the cost of any repairs ordered by the inspector.
But Bruno ruled the two cab drivers, Niran Gunasekara and Suzanne O'Neill, had no "right of action," finding that their allegation of "competitive harm" from the uneven inspection requirements did not give them the legal standing to sue.
A judge ruled Tuesday against a group of taxi drivers in Kenner seeking to force drivers for…
The lawsuit marked the latest failed bid by cabbies to slow the growth of app-based ride-booking services in the New Orleans area.
In July, a Jefferson Parish judge ruled against a group of taxi drivers in Kenner who sought to force Uber and Lyft drivers to buy $50 occupational licenses to operate in that city. Judge Conn Regan agreed with Kenner officials they had the discretion to require licenses or not.