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Taxi Medallion Sale Denied by Court in NYC

On Friday, a state judge issued a ruling that a new plan to expand city cabs outside of Manhattan is a violation of the state’s constitution. The plan was for New York City to raise $1.4 billion by selling 2,000 taxi medallions. Arthur Engoron, the acting Supreme Court Justice, said that “The entire act is null and void” when issuing a ruling in favor of the taxi owners who sued the city.

The decision issued by Engoron was made in part on Mayor Michael Bloomberg and his administration’s failure to have the city council approve the plan. The decision by the judge will be appealed by the city, according to Michael Cardozo. Cardozo is corporation counsel for the New York City Law Department. The cab owners claimed that their medallions would lose value if so many new ones were sold.

“The irrational fear of lost profits by medallion owners and lenders should not be permitted to derail these important programs,” Cardozo said in a statement.

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Bloomberg has not announced how the gap in the budget will be filled now that the court has ruled in favor of the cab owners. Bloomberg said previously that jobs might be cut if the city lost the case. Bloomberg hoped to raise $635 million by selling the 2,000 medallions for the $68.7 billion budget for the fiscal year of 2013. In 2014, $365 million would be raised and in 2015, $460 million would be raised.

A plaintiff in the case, The Metropolitan Taxicab Board of Trade, said that owners are “breathing a sigh of relief that their livelihoods will not be destroyed by this flawed and destructive plan.”

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