Cab company asking drivers to prepay fees

Cabbies asked the San Francisco Taxi Commission on Tuesday to bar the city's largest taxi company, Yellow Cab, from making drivers prepay their gate fees each month.

These fees now average $98.50 per shift.

For busy drivers, the new policy means shelling out nearly $2,000 a month.  Yellow Cab assistant manager Jim Gillespie said drivers would be required to comply with the new policy by December.

Drivers say the policy is a legal maneuver to cement their status as independent contractors instead of employees, depriving them of their rights to workers’ compensation and other benefits.

San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors also opposes the policy. An attorney for the state Department of Industrial Relations said Yellow Cab's policy was likely illegal.

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