SANTA MONICA (AP) — A judge has temporarily blocked Santa Monica’s new taxi franchising system after Armenian American cabbies complained they were excluded.

The Taxi Drivers Association of Santa Monica, which represents five Armenian American-owned or operated cab companies and 300 drivers, filed a discrimination suit against the city on Tuesday.

In June, Santa Monica officials review franchise applications and chose five of 13 cab companies, none of them Armenian American owned or operated. The franchise system begins next week.

The Los Angeles Times says Superior Court Judge Robert O’Brien on Wednesday issued a temporary restraining order blocking the franchise plan until Jan. 7, when Santa Monica attorneys must to show why the preliminary injunction shouldn’t be granted.

(© Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Comments (2)
  1. jason h says:

    SM city council is behaving strangely here…sounds like more corruption. I can’t see how reducing competition is in the public’s interest.

  2. Astonished says:

    Almost every cab company in California has more Armenian and Middle Eastern drivers than any other ethnicity. So how is not chosing these companies out of 13 total discrimination?

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