Another year goes by and the island is witness to another taxi dispute as tourist industry's first busy period of the year gets under way. Last year it was a heated and violent dispute between Palma taxi drivers and their out-of-town colleagues which left thousands of holidaymakers and members of the general public stranded and seriously disrupted people's lives. The Palma taxi fleet is now content, it has recently been given the green light to put up taxi fares, but now it is Calvia which is being hit by escalating industrial action by cabbies and yesterday the Federation of Small Shopkeepers threw its support behind local taxi drivers. The dispute is over the local council's plans to issue 60 more licences. After years of growth in the local population and the increase in the number of tourists, Calvia council does not think that the current fleet of 188 vehicles is enough to meet demand. Taxi drivers say that the figure is too high, more cabbies will mean less income, but the local council says that services in Capdella, Peguera and Illetas are “deficient.” What is more, the town hall has received a number of complaints from passengers who have been forced to wait in queues at taxi ranks. In an official communique, the Federation of Small Shopkeepers (PIMEM) accused Calvia Council of failing to play fair and discuss the proposals with the interested parties.

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