New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has nominated Meera Joshi, former general counsel of the city’s Taxi and Limousine Commission, to serve as the commission’s chairwoman. The City Council must confirm the appointment.
De Blasio clashed with Joshi’s predecessor, David Yassky, who supported former mayor Michael Bloomberg’s plan to roll out lime-green taxis in the outer boroughs and upper Manhattan. De Blasio and the yellow cab industry opposed that plan. The green taxis have already begun operating, and Yassky has moved on to become dean of Pace Law School.
De Blasio also opposed Bloomberg’s “Taxi of Tomorrow” plan to replace the city’s taxi fleet with new taxis, minivans made by Nissan that are more fuel efficient than the traditional Ford Crown Victorias and have features like passenger-operated climate control and an intercom between passengers and drivers. Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Shlomo Hagler struck down the plan to require drivers to switch to the new cars, though they are still being sold (NYLJ, Oct. 9, 2013).
As general counsel, Joshi worked to implement both plans. Nevertheless, de Blasio called her “a dedicated public servant with the experience and energy to move our Taxi and Limousine Commission in a progressive direction, ensuring we prioritize New Yorkers’ safety” in a press release on Saturday.
Joshi, a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania Law School, previously served as deputy executive director of the city’s Civilian Complaint Review Board, which handles complaints about the police. Prior to that, she was inspector general of correctional services at the city’s Department of Investigation.