NEW YORK, July 12 (Xinhua) -- New York City's Taxi & Limousine Commission (TLC) approved Thursday a 17-percent fare increase for cabs, the first major increase since 2006.
Starting in September, cab meters would start clicking 50-cent increments for each fifth of a mile (0.3 kilometer) traveled, or for each minute in stopped or slow traffic, up from 40 cents, according to TLC spokesman Allan Fromberg.
The cost of a fare between Manhattan and Kennedy International Airport will rise by 7 U.S. dollars, to 52 U.S. dollars, exclusive of tolls and tip. The surcharge on rides to Newark Liberty International Airport will also go up, to 17.5 U.S. dollars from 15 U.S. dollars.
In addition to the fare increase, the TLC also created a new six-cent surcharge on every taxi ride, which will fund a new account to provide health care to the largely uninsured community of cabbies. The surcharge will come out of drivers'take-home pay.
The increase made New York fourth in cost for an average taxi ride, behind Tokyo, San Francisco and Los Angeles, according to the TLC study. Its latest figure showed that New York's 13,000 yellow cabs carry about 600,000 people in 450,000 trips each day.