In a report presented to councillors on Thursday, city staff recommended a 2.5-per-cent increase, partly in recognition of OC Transpo's 2.5-per-cent fare increase in 2011.
Although taxi fares rose eight per cent last year to take into account the HST, staff noted cab "costs of operations" rose 11.3 per cent – including HST adjustments – due to higher gas and insurance costs. A four-per-cent increase would be required to catch up, staff stated.
CAW Local 1688, which represents Ottawa taxi drivers, had previously asked for a 10-per-cent meter increase, but opted to withdraw the request at the committee's meeting on Thursday.
"We wanted to show clearly that we are working with council, in this restrained economy, to make travel in Ottawa as affordable as possible," stated Amrik Singh, the local's president.
The rate freeze for 2012 still requires the approval of full council.