Matthew W. Daus is partner and Chair of the Transportation Practice Group at Windels, Marx, Lane & Mittendorf, LLP counseling clients on a broad range of matters including regulatory compliance, strategic planning, procurement, litigation, administrative law and public policy. He most recently served as Commissioner and Chairman of the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission for nearly a decade. He was appointed by Mayors Giuliani and Bloomberg, as well as the New York City Council and was the agency's longest serving Chief Executive Officer. Prior to that, he supervised over 75 Administrative Law Judges and served as General Counsel to the TLC for 5 years. During his tenure as TLC Commissioner, he designed and implemented unprecedented reforms in the country's largest for-hire ground transportation industry that included numerous safety, technology, customer service and environmental initiatives. His best known accomplishments include: mandating GPS and credit cards in all NYC taxicabs; introducing hybrid taxicabs to the fleet; starting the Taxi of Tomorrow project; auction 1000 medallions to bring hundreds of millions of dollars to the city’s treasury; passing the toughest laws nationally governing cell phone use and distracted driving; and coordinating the city’s transportation contingency plan for the last transit strike and helping the industry recover from the economic effects of 9/11 with a recovery plan.
Matthew’s legal practice also includes employment law, representing clients on a range of matters from civil rights and discrimination matters, to employment contracts and worker classification issues with the Departments of Labor, for both transportation companies and other clients. Before his work at the TLC, he was a Prosecutor for the NYC Commission on Human Rights, where handled investigation, litigation and mediation involving employment discrimination matters in the areas of employment, housing and public accommodation. Two years ago Matthew was appointed by Mayor Bloomberg and confirmed by the NYC Council to serve as Commissioner for the New York City Civil Service Commission, where he presides in a quasi-judicial capacity to hear and decide employee candidate, disciplinary and medical leave appeals under the NY State Civil Service Law. He also was appointed by the President of the NY State Bar Association to its Committee on Civil Rights, where he continues to serve. In the 1990s, Matthew obtained a Master of Laws (LLM degree) from New York University School of Law specializing in employment law following his graduation from Touro Law School.
Of the numerous accomplishments since leaving government service, one major victory benefitting the public involved his representation of NY State Senator Marty Golden in Ryan, et al v. NYCTA, litigation involving the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA), alleging discrimination against senior citizens and disabled passengers resulting from “doomsday budget cut” decisions wiping out certain bus routes and Access-A-Ride service in naturally occurring retirement communities. The lawsuit was settled through the MTA’s restoration of bus service in Brooklyn, and through the expansion of the pilot program Matthew started years ago using livery vehicles to transport disabled passengers instead of inefficient, costly vans and environmentally unfriendly vans. Matthew later authored an op-ed article entitled “Hailing the Wrong Taxi” that was published in the January 5, 2012 edition of the New York Times, Opinion Pages, which explores improving ground transportation service for disabled passengers by reforming and restructuring the Access-A-Ride system using taxicabs and livery vehicles instead of vans. Matthew has received national attention for these ideas resulting in a grant from the United States Department of Transportation to study such matters and implement reforms across the U.S., and he was invited earlier this year to present his findings to the Transportation Research Board of the National Academy of Sciences in Washington, D.C.
Since leaving office, Matthew returned to the academic world. In the 1990s, Matthew lectured on Business Law at his alma mater, the City University of New York (CUNY), Brooklyn College. He returned to CUNY after leaving the TLC and was appointed by the CUNY Board of Trustees as Distinguished Lecturer of its Transportation Research Center (“UTRC”) at The City College of New York. The UTRC is one of ten original University Transportation Centers established in 1987 by the U.S. Congress, representing the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Region II, which includes New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Functioning as a consortium of twelve major universities throughout the region, the Center is located at the CUNY Institute for Transportation Systems at The City College of New York, the lead institution of the consortium. These universities include: CUNY; Columbia University Cornell University; New Jersey Institute of Technology; New York University; Polytechnic Institute of NYU; Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute; Rowan University; Rutgers University; State University of New York; Stevens Institute of Technology; University of Puerto Rico-Mayaguez. Matthew conducts and supports research, education and the transfer of technology in the field of transportation, and serves as a lecturer at City College’s Grove School of Engineering, teaching graduate courses that include: sustainable transportation, transportation policy and bus/taxi/limousine policy.
Matthew serves as President of the International Association of Transportation Regulators (IATR). IATR is a peer group of ground transportation regulators and supportive industry businesses from around the world, dedicated to improving private for-hire transportation through education, research and legislative action promoting government reform and best practices. The IATR is currently spearheading an effort to allow taxi regulators to obtain national criminal background records of drivers by lobbying Congress for changes to federal law. Matthew has served as IATR President since 2008. Representing the IATR as well as the City University of New York, since leaving government, Matthew has circled the world as a prolific speaker and writer, visiting almost every continent and major U.S. city in the last 2 years, including the following speeches/presentations: Distracted Driving, Issues & Resolutions, TLPA Spring Conference & Expo, New Orleans, LA (May 2012); Regulation and Safety of Unauthorized Booking Systems, Australian Taxi Industry Association 2012 Australian Taxi Conference, Gold Coast, Australia (April 2012); International Association of Public Transport (“UITP”); 1st UITP International Taxi Conference “Changing the Rules of Taxi Business with New Technology, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, (March 2012); Transportation Research Board (“TRB”); “Taxicabs for Improved Urban Mobility”: Are We Missing an Opportunity?,(Daus, King, Peters) Washington, D. C. (Jan. 2012); Taxi Research Network (“TRN”); “How Technology Changed the New York City Taxi Industry”, Amsterdam, The Netherlands (Dec. 2011); BIT City 2011; Taxi GPS Data – Legal, Privacy & Policy Issues, Columbia University Lecture, New York, NY (Nov. 2011); PUFA – The Prevention of Unreasonable Airport Fees Act, Airport Ground Transportation Association, San Jose, California (October 2011); “Training and Hospitality- The Keys to Taxi Success”, (A New Paradigm for Bridging the Accessibility Gap Between Transit and Taxis), IATR Conference, Toronto, Ontario, Canada (Sep. 2011); Parataxis: Inter-modal Solutions for Urban and Rural Communities (Daus, Cooper), TLPA Mid-Year International Leadership Conference, Rome, Italy (July, 2011); “Maintaining and Improving Rural Transit Supply In An Era Of Cost Cutting- Parataxis- Intermodal Solutions For Rural Communities and Beyond” (Daus, Cooper), New York Public Transit Association (“NYPTA), Buffalo, NY (June, 2011); The Advantages of Medallion Systems for the Regulation of Taxicab Services “The United States and New York City Experience”, Australian Taxi Industry Association (“AITA”) 2011 Australian Taxi Conference, Hobart Tasmania, Australia (May, 2011); Nanotechnology Conference - Alternative Fueled Taxicabs, New York, NY (December 2010); Airport & Taxi Research Synergies: The Evolution and Metamorphosis of Airports into Quasi-Taxi Regulators; Study Update & Survey (Daus, Mundy), The Airport Ground Transportation Association (“AGTA”), Fort Myers, FL (Mar. 2011); San Antonio, TX (Sep. 2010); “Regulating with a Purpose: Accessible, Safe, and Sustainable Streets” (Building the Ideal Taxi System), IATR, Chicago, IL (Sep. 2010); “Where Are Taxis Going”?: Tech Taxis- The Future of Urban Transport World Conference on Transport Research (“WCTR”), Lisbon, Portugal (July, 2010).
Matthew’s recently received honoraria include: the current Taxi & Limousine Chair David Yassky and the TLC's Board of Commissioners honoring his "historic tenure and compassionate leadership" in November 2011; and the "Lawyer of the Year" award by the Kings County Republican Party in May 2011. Matthew serves on a number of non-profit boards, which includes: Co-Chairman of both the Brooklyn Economic Development Corporation and Chairman of the Coalition of Transportation Associations (COTA), representing all black car and limousine businesses in NYC, Long Island and New Jersey.