Eight months after state officials convened a focus group to get opinions on how to spend the millions of dollars accumulating in a fund comprised of fees on Uber and Lyft rides, the taxi cab and limo company owners till haven't seen the money they were promised.

In 2016, Gov. Charlie Baker signed legislation that added a 20-cent surcharge on ridesharing trips. Five cents of each fee was earmarked for taxi cab companies to compensate them for the impact Lyft and Uber has had on their businesses. Taxi companies have estimated that their traditional taxi business was cut by more than half.

Joann Thompson, owner of Tommy's Taxi in Framingham, was invited to the focus group. Thompson said the taxi cab owners invited to the session had lots of ideas about how to spend the money, including upgrading digital dispatch services, improving smartphone apps and creating low interest or no interest revolving loan programs to replace aging vehicles and equipment.

She said the consultant hired by MassDevelopment, the state agency tasked with divvying up the money, reacted positively to the taxi owners suggestions, and told everyone they would be hearing something about distribution of the money by last summer.

But as 2019 drew to a close, the taxi companies were still waiting. "They haven't issued any guidelines or any time frame when we might expect to hear something - or better yet get something," Thompson said. "I don't know where the money is... they said they were making their recommendations to the state by the beginning of the summer and we should be hearing something and we have heard nothing."

MassDevelopment officials were unable to explain why no decision has been made or say when an announcement could be expected.

"The nature and timing of any announcement regarding how the funds will be spent is still uncertain," said MassDevelopment spokesperson Kelsey Schiller.

Thompson said the money is desperately needed by many smaller companies, and she hopes the state will release something before more taxi companies go out of business.