Taxi Service Sees Boost

The closure of one business in Meridian has led to a boost for another one.

More than three weeks after Meridian Transit System closed due to money problems, officials with Meridian Cab Company say they are reaping some of the benefits.

"To work and shop, mainly to work," said cab driver, Tyrone Naylor of the most common destinations for his riders.

According to company officials, their biggest jump in ridership was the Saturday after Meridian Transit closed.

"From 8 to about 12, I received over 100 calls," said Lashassadee Lewis. "So, by the time I left here at 4 o'clock we had turned over 130 calls within the city."

"The inner city is our primary base," said Meridian Cab owner, Clemmie Mathis. "Everybody can't afford the gas and automobiles. Oh, the future of Meridian Cab Company is good. No doubt about it."

Although bus service in Meridian is expected to resume soon, Mathis says his company will be fine because it caters to needs in areas where the buses do not directly go. Right now he says his biggest concern is the rising price of gas.

"The effect is tremendous when it cuts into your overall take home by 20% or 30%; that's a big effect," Mathis said.

To offset the rising price at the pump, Mathis says he has asked city officials to approve a rate increase for the company. Right now there's no word on whether or not that will be granted.

Meanwhile, Mathis says he's focused on the future.

"Oh, the future of Meridian Cab Company is good," he said. "No doubt about it."