PTC, the Public Transportation Commission is being eliminated meaning an increasing number of taxi companies, two truck drivers, and ride sharing companies may be answering to different departments from different agencies that are filling in the work left behind from the scandal erupted inside the PTC, and resulting in the massive shutdown of the agency. State lawmakers this year passed a proposal to abolish the PTC before 2017 ends. Many of these changes were made in adherence to the proposed bill that could take some of the work from the PTC into other areas within the County’s multiple agencies.

If the proposal is approved on June 7, then the PTC will be dissolved by the start of fall.

Dividing the work

The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office will be in charge of investigations over illegal towing practices in the state under the new proposal from the County. Tax Collector Doug Belden, who took over most of the work from the PTC, will administer public driving permits for taxi drivers and renewals of license tags or plates from taxi drivers. The County Administrator’s Office will be in charge of handling consumer complaints. The Emergency Medical Planning Council will be in charge of non-emergency ambulances.

Revisions on work

Hillsborough County will oversee many of the regulations of taxi cabs and limo drivers along with tow trucks.

But the biggest situation going forward after dismantling the PTC is the threat of non-enforcement and the methods to make sure people regulate and maintain public transportation services properly under the law. The PTC was created in 1976 to regulate taxicabs in three of Hillsborough’s most populous cities: Tampa, Plant City, and Temple Terrace.

Ambulances and tow trucks were added later to the PTC. However, other counties in Florida have most of these regulations on public transportation are regulated by county or city government.

The downfall to the agency was the three year spat between PTC and ride sharing companies like Uber and Lyft. Many of these ride sharing employees paid their fines, but also dragged the PTC to court.

Throughout the tree years the PTC did sting operations to catch these ride sharing vehicles in the act of operating without permits or insurance and ticket them for violations. County commissioners will review the game plan this Wednesday and will continue the discussion on what to do with the remaining employees at the PTC and the rest of the work that needs to be taken care of in June of this year.

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