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San Francisco CUs make loans for taxi medallions
SAN FRANCISCO (8/11/10)--Three San Francisco-area credit unions and one out-of-state credit union are part of a consortium of lenders making loans to facilitate sales of San Francisco taxi medallions (licenses) by taxi drivers, a move that could add millions of dollars to city coffers. San Francisco FCU, San Francisco Fire CU, San Francisco Police CU and Montauk CU, New York City, are part of the consortium (San Francisco Business Times May 20). Under the pilot program, taxi drivers who are at least 70 years old or who have a disability can sell their medallions--which will be priced at $250,000. Drivers will keep 80% of the sales revenue, the citys municipal agency will get 15% and a drivers fund will receive the remaining 5%. Up to 300 medallion-holders could qualify to sell during the trial phase of the program, which means San Francisco could garner $11.2 million if all the medallions sell, the Times said. Since 1978, when voters codified the city taxi laws, medallions were issued to drivers in exchange for a small fee. However, until now, drivers who had medallions were not given a mechanism to cash out on the lucrative licenses, the Times said. A taxi advisory council will observe the pilot program and likely will determine in 2011 if the pool of potential medallion sellers should be expanded, the city told the Times.


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