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Hotels, airport: No effect from Vegas cab strike

Published on NewsOK Modified: March 3, 2013 at 7:53 pm •  Published: March 3, 2013
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LAS VEGAS (AP) — More than 1,000 drivers at Las Vegas' second-largest taxicab company walked off their jobs Sunday, but the strike apparently caused no immediate major problems for visitors to the major tourist destination.

The strike by drivers at Yellow-Checker-Star Transportation had no apparent impact at MGM Resorts International's 10 major resorts on the Las Vegas Strip, company spokeswoman Yvette Monet said.

The strike also had no impact on movement of people through McCarran International Airport, one of the nation's busiest airports, said spokesman Chris Jones.

"There's going to be lines for taxis, but that's a normal thing, strike or no strike," he said. "We haven't seen anything that suggests something beyond the usual."

The strike came during one of the city's busiest times, with fans taking in four major college basketball tournaments and bettors flocking to sports books during March Madness. In 2012, March topped all other months in tourism, with 3.5 million visitors coming in.

Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority spokesman Jeremy Handel declined to comment and referred queries about the strike's impact to the resorts.

More than a dozen taxi companies with a total of 3,000 cabs operate in Las Vegas. Dispatchers for several major companies — including Frias Transportation Management, the city's largest with some 1,000 cabs— declined to comment on the impact the strike has had on their business, and said managers would not be available for comment until Monday.

Yellow-Check-Star was only able to fill two-thirds of its 600 cabs after the strike against it took effect early Sunday, and that percentage was expected to drop later in the day, said company chief operating officer Bill Shranko.

"Of course, it's impacting our operations," he told The Associated Press. "But we have implemented our last and final offer. There's not going to be any change in that."

Paul Bohelski, chief negotiator for the union representing drivers, said the main sticking points were pay and working conditions.

About 1,400 of the company's 1,700 drivers are members of Industrial Technical Professional Employees Union Local 4873, and more than 1,000 of them were participating in the strike, he said. Last month, the company unilaterally implemented a contract rejected by 70 percent of the union members.

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