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Taxes for Taxi’s- who’s driving your kids?

WHO’S DRIVING THE KIDS?

1 in 10 taxi cab drivers in 47 school districts — 
arrested or convicted of such crimes as aggravated battery, soliciting prostitutes,
possession of a controlled substance, assault, I.D. theft, 
mob action, or have orders of protection against them.
Phil Rogers, NBC5- Chicago 

Watch NBC5- Chicago Investigation here
April 9, 2013

Last year at OpenTheBooks.com, we posted all Illinois school district checkbooks…

In our Taxes for Taxi’s Report, we exposed 48 north suburban school districts spent $50 million shuttling children in taxi cabs (2006-2011). Only 8 districts had contracts, the rest circumvented procurement law and paid for expensive individual rides. Read our report here. 

Now, NBC5 found that taxi companies and schools have exposed children to incredible risk. For instance, a convicted child sex offender drove taxi’s at eight different school districts!

Thanks to the investigative reporting of Phil Rogers, the hiring practices at the two biggest providers of taxi cab service are now being investigated by the Cook County State’s Attorney.

Is your school using taxi cabs to transport students?
Review database of schools and cab companies here.

Want to be a Watchdog? For districts using taxi’s, demand to see:
1. The contract with the cab company and proof of bidding process. All expenditures over $25,000 are subject to mandatory bidding.
2. The district RFP (Request for Proposal). See if the district attempted to get competitive bids.
3.  Proof that the drivers have “clean” records. The list of permitted taxi cab drivers is a mandatory requirement.
Download sample Freedom of Information Act request here.

Can your school comply with the law? Half can’t.

Thanks to our Taxes for Taxi’s Report a year ago, Gurnee Elementary School District 56, Woodland Elementary District 50, and Warren Township High School District 121 curtailed the use of outside taxi companies achieving two goals: saved money, improved safety. Read news article here.

Local citizens must demand transparency- to safeguard our children and stop corrupt practices.

Let us know what you find. 

Adam Andrzejewski
founder, non-profit OpenTheBooks.com
For The Good of Illinois
adam@openthebooks.com

P.S. Our organization relies on you, please help by donating $25, $50, $100, $250 or $500 today, Click here.

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