TLPA's Las Vegas Convention A Breakthrough Success
Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada
October 8-11, 2006
The last time the Taxicab, Limousine & Paratransit Association held its Annual Convention & Trade Show in Las Vegas (October 2000) it shattered every previous TLPA attendance record with 1,118 attendees. Then came the terrorist attacks of 9/11 and attendance at TLPA shows shrank to an average attendance of 732 for the past five years. We are happy to report that the 88th Annual TLPA Convention & Trade Show in Las Vegas, October 7-10, was a tremendous breakthrough and is now our third largest TLPA Convention ever. Just fewer than 1,000 people (985) attended this event and the reviews have been extremely favorable.
The pre-convention Gateway Insurance Golf Tournament set a new record in supporting the Taxicab, Limousine & Paratransit Foundation (TLPF) where 50 golfers played at the Desert Pines Golf Club on Saturday afternoon October 7. The golfers enjoyed a banquet co-hosted by John Burnham Insurance Services after the tournament. The golf tournament was rated excellent or good by 90% of the convention survey respondents.
On Sunday morning, October 8, participants registered for the convention and received the ever-popular Liberty Motor Company registration bag. Then hundreds of operators toured Yellow Checker Star Transportation's fabulous new facility. Yellow Checker Star's 825-vehicle fleet is propane powered and the company is the largest user of propane west of the Mississippi River. The tour was rated excellent or good by 96% of the respondents and 4% rated it an average tour.
On Sunday afternoon, the educational sessions began with 27 roundtable discussions. Each roundtable had a moderator who provided a brief overview of the topic and then the floor was open for what turned out to be very lively discussions. Topics covered by the roundtables included Advances & Problems with Computer Dispatch; Countering Your Competitor's Guerrilla Tactics; How to Operate a Successful Wheelchair Accessible Taxi Service; Getting Public Appreciation for Your Service; Current Issues in Dispatching Through Radios/Cell Phones/Pagers; How to Place Credible Value on Your Company; Legal Issues with Independent Contractor Drivers; Pros & Cons of Exclusive Contracts at Airports; and How to Get Involved in the MPO Transit Planning Process to name just a few. These roundtable discussions were among the highest rated events of the convention. Over 93% of the survey respondents rated the roundtables as excellent or good.
After the roundtables ended, the Grand Opening Reception took place in the Exhibit Hall. The Trade Show featured industry vendors and suppliers in 83 booths and 24 vehicle spaces including the introduction of Standard Taxi's first U.S. purpose-built taxicab since Checker stopped production in the early 1980s. John Burnham Insurance Services (a platinum level convention sponsor) hosted the open bar. A number of exhibitors stated that they had more activity at this show than any trade show in recent memory. 98% of the respondents rated the new floor plan as excellent or good; 86% of the respondents rated the exhibit hall open hours as excellent or good; 93% of the respondents rated the floor traffic as excellent or good; 93% of the respondents rated the floor traffic excellent or good; 89% of the respondents rated the quality sales prospects excellent or good.
Sunday evening featured TLPA's Women in Transportation Dinner, co-sponsored by Transit Express of Milwaukee. More than 60 people dined and listened to a presentation from Robin Angle who works for TLPA's lobbying firm, Capital Partnerships. She told the attendees how to conduct grass root lobbying at the local level. An article summarizing Ms. Angle's comments will soon be published.
Monday morning started with breakfast sponsored by American Country Insurance Company, which was followed by the General Session featuring a keynote speech by Congressman John Duncan. Congressman Duncan is a senior member of the U.S. House of Representatives Transportation & Infrastructure Committee, which funds highways, transit, rail and airports. Congressman Duncan reviewed how a number of provisions in the SAFETEA-LU transportation law are beneficial to TLPA members.
The Monday morning General Session also featured outgoing TLPA President Brian McBride's review of the association's major accomplishments for 2006, for which he received a standing ovation. The general session also included a report from TLPA lobbyist Ken Butler, presentation of the TLPA Operator and Driver of the Year awards, and a surprise "stretch break" led by former NBA player KJ Johnson. The general session received an excellent or good rating by 91% of the survey respondents.
Monday afternoon featured the Trade Show. Standard Taxi (a platinum level convention sponsor) hosted the exceptional Italian buffet for lunch in the exhibit hall. From Noon to 5:00pm the exhibit hall was bustling with activity. The convention participants gave the Trade Show a tremendous rating of 94% excellent or good. Also, 59% of the respondents indicated they made a decision to purchase an item at the Trade Show.
Tuesday morning featured nine breakout sessions including presentations from:
- Mark Crosby, President of the Enterprise Wireless Alliance who discussed to what extent policy makers in Washington, DC are paying attention to the transportation industry's wireless communication needs, radio spectrum resources that remain available and new wireless solutions that may be beneficial to our industry.
- Dr. Ray Mundy, Director of the Center for Transportation Studies, University of Missouri-St. Louis, presented the findings from his new study, Benefits of a Full Service Taxicab Company to the Community and Consumers. Dr. Mundy stated that his research findings emphasize "the need for local regulatory authorities to reassess their present taxicab market structures and initiate changes in the legal framework (ordinances) that support the adoption of the full service taxicab company model."
- Jon Burkhardt, Senior Study Director at Westat presented his preliminary findings of an analysis of the major federally funded programs that allow private operator participation.
- A panel of operators, who use in-vehicle cameras in their company operations, discussed the pros and cons of the cameras.
- A panel of operators who advertise in or on their vehicle discussed the pros and cons of such advertising and the ad rates they currently receive.
- A panel of operators, who accept credit/debit cards in their taxicabs, discussed the pros and cons of accepting credit and debit cards and point of sales issues.
- The Taxicab, Limousine, and Paratransit Steering Committees each met in a session.
When asked to rate the Tuesday breakout sessions an outstanding 100% of the respondents rated them excellent or good with no average or poor ratings at all. On Tuesday morning, there was also an optional spouse tour of Las Vegas Villa. Again 100% of the respondents rated the tour as exceptional or good.
On Tuesday afternoon, after the Trade Show closed, both the TLPF and TLPA held their Annual Business Meetings. Foundation President Larry Slagle and Treasurer Anthony Palmeri presented their annual report on TLPF's 2006 activities and accomplishments. At TLPA's Annual Business Meeting outgoing President Brian McBride handed over leadership to new President Brian Wier. Brian Wier, CEO of SuperShuttle, promised an exciting year of action including updating the TLPA Strategic Plan. He ended his presentation by introducing his wife, daughter and his "personal hero", his son Michael, who had just returned from his second tour of duty as a Marine in Iraq. There was a standing ovation. Over 85% of the respondents rated the business meetings as excellent or good.
The meeting concluded with a grand closing banquet featuring entertainment from comedian-impressionist Larry G. Jones. The sing-a-longs and clapping indicated the high degree of enjoyment had by all. TLPA convention participants left Las Vegas on a high note feeling that it had indeed been the best TLPA meeting in many years. When asked to rate the 88th Annual Convention & Trade Show overall, 95% rated it excellent or good with just 5% thinking it was an average meeting.
|Congressman John Duncan: This senior member of the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee, which funds highways, transit, rail, airports, etc., is a champion for small business transportation companies. On Monday, October 9, Chairman Duncan, recipient of TLPA's Legislator of the Year award in 2005, will discuss how Congress views private transportation companies and he will discuss new provisions in the SAFETEA-LU transportation law that are meant to assist private operators.|
|Arthur Herold: As General Counsel to TLPA, there is no one better versed on independent contractor driver issues before the federal government than Mr. Herold. He is the senior partner at Webster, Chamberlain & Bean, a Washington, DC based law firm that has represented TLPA for about forty years. Back by popular demand, Mr. Herold will lead the three independent contractor roundtable discussions that will be held on Sunday, October 8.|
|Jon Burkhardt: This pioneer, with 39 years experience in transportation services for persons with special needs, is Senior Study Director at Westat. TLPA has retained Mr. Burkhardt to conduct an analysis of federally funded transportation programs that allow private operators to participate in the programs. He will release his findings of the major federal funding sources appropriate for private transportation operators at the TLPA Convention in Las Vegas on Tuesday, October 10.|
|Mark Crosby: As President of the Enterprise Wireless Alliance (EWA), Mr. Crosby is a leading advocate for private wireless solutions for business communications. EWA is also an FCC-certified frequency coordinator for land transportation, industrial and business entities. On Tuesday, October 10, he will discuss wireless solutions, how to protect your communication system's FCC license, and where the FCC is headed with user fees and auctioning of frequencies.|
|Ray Mundy: Dr. Mundy is Director of the Center for Transportation Studies of the University of Missouri-St. Louis and author of the new study Benefits of a Full Service Taxicab Company to the Community and Consumers. On October 10, he will present the findings, which states, "
emphasizing the need for local regulatory authorities to reassess their present taxicab market structures and initiate changes in the legal framework (ordinances) that support the adoption of the full service taxicab company model."|
Platinum Convention Sponsor
|TLPF Golf Banquet|
Grand Opening Reception (Open Bar)
|Exhibit Hall Luncheon|
Two Internet Stations at TLPA Lounge
Gold Convention Sponsor
|Convention Registration Bags|
|TLPF Golf Tournament|
Silver Convention Sponsor
|Convention Name Badge Holders|
|General Session Coffee & Danish|
Bronze Convention Sponsor
|Breakfast Tour of Transportation Company|
|Transportation for Tour of Transportation Company|
List of Exhibitors(as of 8/29/06)
- 1-800-TAXICAB Space 510
The National Taxi Directory provides advertising services online and on-the-phone to leading transportation companies since 1999.
- A.B.I. Insurance Services Space 117
Transportation insurance specialists providing coverage in most states.
- Advanced EDR Systems Space 517
Our video reorder captures video before and after an event then downloads it automatically (wirelessly).
- Advantage Funding Space 312
The industry leader in commercial automotive leasing and financing.
- ALEPH, Inc. Spaces 524 & 526
A complete Windows-based software solution for the transportation industry.
- American Country Insurance Company Space 523
Passenger transportation is all we do, so we do it better than anyone else. Whether you're looking to insure one limousine or 100 taxis, we've got you covered.
- APP Technologies LLC Space 511
Advanced, easy-to-use claims, risk, and workforce compliance management software for the transportation industry.
- Around Town Transportation Products, LLC "ATTP" Space Z
Manufacturer of commercial wheelchair vans and shuttle vans.
- Astra Media Group Space 303
A manufacturer of taxi top displays for the next generation of taxis.
- AutoHood Media Space 103
Marketing a new medium for vehicle advertising, bringing advertisers and fleet owners together, for mutually beneficial relationships.
- Autovan LLC Space F
ADA and COTvans are being used by the largest accessible taxi fleet and largest non-emergency medical transportation fleet in the United States.
- Barnett Mobility Space J
The #1 choice of TLPA members for wheelchair accessible minivans and full size vans! Ask about our TLPA discount.
- CabConnect Spaces 416 & 418
The leading authority of digital payment transactions for the ground transportation industry.
- Cabina-America Insurance, A RRG, LLC Space 105
A Risk Retention Group, offering responsive and maintained taxi liability coverage plus.
- Cadillac Professional Vehicles Space R
Leads the way from extraordinary performance and style to the latest advances in technology.
- Cartasite, Inc. Space tba
Develops GPS based fleet monitoring and navigation solutions to optimize fleet performance and operations.
- Centrodyne Corp. of America Space 409
Taximeters, printers and wireless credit card approvals.
- Clean Energy Space X
The largest provider of vehicular natural gas (compressed and liquefied) in North America.
- Clear Channel Taxi Media Space 333
Serving the media needs of the taxi industry for nine years in over 25 cities.
- D.M.P. Co., Inc. Space 402
Supplier of after market auto parts for taxi and livery cars. Nationwide shipping is available.
- Digital Dispatch Systems Spaces 423, 425 & 427
Provides wireless data systems worldwide including mobile computers, network gateways, and communication infrastructure.
- Eclipse Specialty Vehicles Space B
Manufacturer specializing in building mobility vans for people with disabilities and special needs.
- El Dorado National Space tba
Accessible taxi, low floor minivan.
- Enterprise Wireless Alliance Space tba
Is devoted to assisting business users in the deployment of wireless communication solutions that promote productivity.
- EZ Tops World Wide Inc. Space 508
Manufacturers and designers of "virtually unbreakable" taxi roof signs & taxi ad carriers.
- Finite Technology, Inc. Space 324
Wireless credit card processing equipment. Lowest rates merchant services. Affordable computer dispatching software. MDT, GPS & AVL.
- FleetX Space 612
Wireless debit, credit, prepaid and corporate account processing with security web reporting and cashering.
- Gateway Insurance Company Space 319
Longevity, stability, service and flexible plans. We are proud to have served TLPA members continuously since the 1970's.
- Gleike Inc. Space 512
Offers the most innovative taximeters, fleet management, and dispatching systems at extremely competitive prices.
- GPC Computer Software Ltd. Spaces 621 & 623
Advanced, easy-to-use claims, risk, and workforce compliance management software for the transportation industry.
- Ground Travel Technology Team, Inc. (GT3) Space 317
User-friendly, automation-software application systems and solution toolsfor the chauffeured ground transportation provider service industry.
- HiNT Peripherals Corp. Space 509
Manufacturer of mounting hardware for computers and radios, job-call alarm, data cables and power filters.
- John Burnham Insurance Services Space 213
An established transportation team composed of experienced professionals who are dedicated to the field.
- Korotkin Insurance Group Space 432
Specializes in providing insurance coverage for the commercial transportation industry since 1983.
- Liberty Motor Company Space D
The largest supplier of wheelchair-accessible taxicabs in North America.
- Marvin Advertising Co. Space 527
Make the most advertising income with Marvin carriers and Marvin total sales support program year after year.
- Mentor Engineering, Inc. Space 326
Accelerate your taxi operation with Mentor IntelliFleetฎ, an advanced computer dispatch system that improves efficiencies.
- MJM Innovations Space 308
Improves transportation programs through our card solutions, outsourced management services and Web-based software.
- Mobile Knowledge Corp. Spaces 223, 225, & 227
GPS, wireless and mobile data communications, dispatch software, MDTs, mobile media, and professional services.
- MobilityWorks Space N
Manufacturer of non-emergency wheelchair transporters; shuttle bus equipment carrier.
- National Van Builders, Inc. Space P
The leading manufacturer of wheelchair vans, ambulettes and passenger vans, providing the highest quality product and service at the lowest possible price.
- Nextdayfunding.com Space 622
Credit card processing services for transportation companies providing web, batch file, p.c., and wireless point-of-sale solutions.
- Nite-Lite Sign Co., Inc. Space 627
Manufacturer of taxi top-lites.
- Paratransit Insurance Company Space 331
Control your costs. Control your claims. Auto insurance from Paratransit. Join us... and take control.
- Peak Performance Software Corp. Space 133
Collectionizer: cashiering software which integrates with dispatch and accounting. Software services available for custom requirements.
- Premium Payment Plan Space 625
An insurance premium financing organization that possesses extensive knowledge and expertise in the transportation insurance marketplace.
- Professional Insurance Center Space 131
Insurance for executive cars, taxicabs, and limousines.
- Public Livery Insurance Services, Inc. Space T
Transportation insurance specialists providing you with a tailor-made, quality insurance program, competitive pricing and excellent service.
- Pulsar Technology Systems Space 322
America's largest manufacturer of taximeters: regular taximeters, receipt or credit card meters. Pulsar has the solution.
- QSI Corporation Space 204
Manufactures rugged mobile data terminals for in-vehicle applications. Standard and custom terminals are available.
- RSI Insurance Brokers, Inc. Space 513
A full-service premier transportation insurance provider.
- Research Underwriters Spaces 624 & 626
Providing quality insurance solutions for the public transportation industry for over 50 years.
- Retriever Wireless Space 202
Satellite credit card terminal.
- Ride Resource Space tba
Online ground transportation reservation system.
- Say Security Group USA Space 608
We are dedicated to provide primer digital surveillance technology and are committed to 100% customer satisfaction.
- Sigtec PTY. LTD. Spaces 209 & 211
A leading provider of computer-aided dispatch, booking management systems and web enabled GPS tracking solutions.
- Standard Taxi Space H
An original equipment manufacturer purpose-built taxicab specifically engineered for North American taxi and paratransit fleets.
- TMS Management Group of Florida, Inc. Space 430
Brokers and provides all types of paratransit services in a private operator friendly environment.
- Taxi Equipment Company, Inc. Space 413
Your "One Stop Taxi Shop". If I don't have it I'll help you find it! NEW! ADA Braille signs for taxi's.
- Taxi Logistics Space 404
Customized scheduling/cashiering systems.
- TaxiPro/AequiCap Inc. Spaces 230 & 232
The longest, continuous running taxi program, provides insurance services to the public livery market.
- Taxitronic Spaces 613 & 615
Provides affordable state-of-the-art computerized dispatch and in vehicle credit card acceptance systems.
- TranWare, Inc. Space 305
Transportation software for taxi, paratransit and limousine. Driver cashiering, billing, maintenance, AVL, MDT and phone dispatch.
- Trapeze Group Space 607
Provides end-to-end transportation management software solutions for demand responsive transportation providers.
- Unified Dispatch Space 522
Provides transportation fleets with automated call taking solutions and outsourced dispatch/call taking facilities.
- Unified Software, LLC Space 310
Provides complete solutions for all your needs in one integrated package.
- Venture Specialty Insurance Space 610
67% of the time, our free quotes result in lower costs for fleet insurance.
- VerifEye Technologies Space 411
A leader in event driven digital imaging.
- View Point Mobility Space L
Vision rear entrance, lowered floor minivans. Chrysler, Ford and GM vans. Excellent quality and price.
- Way Systems, Inc. Space 525
A global leader in providing mobile, wireless, credit card payment solutions.
- Wireless Edge Space 629
Provides mobile data terminals and communication system for dispatching, GPS tracking and card verification.
Next year's TLPA Annual Convention & Trade Show will be held at the new Hyatt Regency and the Colorado Convention Center in Denver, Colorado, October 9-12, 2007. We hope to see you there, and we promise that it will be another great convention.
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