with Horse and Hound

NYC Mayor to Introduce Horse Carriage Legislation

NYC Mayor de Blasio hasn’t forgotten his promise to ban horse drawn carriages from the streets of New York City. He has waited a full year since his election, but now, according to NYPost.com, de Blasio plans to introduce the legislation into the City Council early in December. He proposes to offset the loss of jobs to the carriage drivers by giving them a year to find other employment and by offering them free permits (worth $6,000 each) to operate green cabs.

“If they offered me a green cab medallion I wouldn’t take it,” said one carriage driver. He was perhaps speaking as a man who has chosen to work with horses—a personal and emotional decision the mayor (and many others) may not comprehend.

The operating rationale for the mayor’s decision to ban the carriages is that it’s cruel to make the horses work, and it’s a danger on crowded city streets. A hard look, however, suggests that’s a sanitized excuse for a developer-driven decision to convert the stables to higher income use.

The issue has been in the news for the past year, and it’s not clear that the mayor has a majority backing for his position among the population—it having been shown that the horses are exceedingly well cared for and given adequate rest. Click for Talma Palmeri’s complete article.

Posted December 1, 2014

The Wall Street Journal is conducting a poll on the horse carriage question. As of this morning, with more than 15,000 votes tallied, those in favor of the carriages remaining on the NYC streets are at 56%, while those in favor of the ban are at 42%. Click to vote.

Updated December 5, 2014