The St. Petersburg Times reported recently that an independent taxi agency in Hillsborough County has a weird requirement: Drivers must wear socks.
And that is evidently not an option.
The agency, the Public Transportation Commission, basically regulates taxicab standards countywide. It doesn't stop at cabs, though. It also covers vans, limos, and handicapped transportation.
Among the drivers' duties is that they dress very specifically: namely, fancy clothes.
Check after the jump for the specific dress code and what one state senator wants to do about it.
The specific dress code falls under Section 6 of the Commission's rulebook. It states:
6.7.1 The driver, if male, shall wear clean trousers or knee-length hemmed shorts, shoes and socks and a shirt with a collar, with or without a tie. Appropriate clean outer garments may be worn, if desired, over the collared shirt. Luxury taxicab and limousine drivers shall wear a collared shirt with tie (with or without jacket), trousers, socks and dress shoes.
6.7.2 The driver, if female, must wear clean trousers or knee-length hemmed shorts, slacks, shoes and an appropriate collar. Appropriate clean outer garments may be worn, if desired, over the collared shirt or blouse. Female luxury taxicab and limousine drivers must wear a collared shirt or blouse, with or without a tie, with or without a jacket, dress slacks or mid-calf hemmed skirt, socks/nylons and closed toed dress shoes.
According to PolitiFact in St. Petersburg Times, Republican Sen. Ronda Storms wants to just do away with the commission altogether and have Hillsbourough County staff make sure safe drivers are hired.
But why do they need to wear socks in a state that's ripe with sandal-wearing hippies? Cesar Padilla, the commission's interim executive director, said the rules are in place to make passengers feel comfortable.