"Why should I have to break the law to do my job?"
It's a warm Friday night in St. Petersburg, a few minutes after 8, and Douglas Osterman-Burgess is maneuvering his cab around Red Mesa Cantina. He pulls up out front, on Third Street N, where a red and white sign says "Taxi Stand."
"Look at this," he exclaims. "I've been asking for this!"
The spot looks unremarkable but for him represents a victory. He says he has been "agitating" for this kind of change for three years. With extended bar hours and the ever-increasing lure of downtown, the city's entertainment district has turned into a taxicab battleground.
As patrons spill out at closing time, those who need a ride home might have to wait 45 minutes for a cab. Despite the demand, fights for fares often erupt.
Read more at the Tampa Bay Times.