The D.C. Council anesthetized a bill 12-1 today that regulates “ridesharing” casework like Uberx and Lyft.
The bill imposes new bartering allowance requirements on clandestine vehicles-for-hire, requires bent accomplishments checks that go aback seven years, asks companies like Uber to authorize zero-tolerance behavior for drugs and alcohol, mandates “trade dress” (like a decal) to be displayed, and allows drudge inspectors to appraise the phones of drivers doubtable of acrimonious up an actionable artery hail.
The vote was preceded by agitation on nine amendments proposed by Councilmember Jim Graham, who said he had “very austere concerns” over whether the bill “goes far abundant to abundantly assure the accessible and … arouse a fair antagonism in the industry so that we can accept a akin arena field.”
“For the Council to acquiesce self-regulation of these bartering ventures is absolutely like accepting the fox bouncer the craven coop,” Graham said.
Four of Graham’s amendments were accustomed as friendly, but the added bristles failed. The amendments included mandating FBI feel press accomplishments checks, aperture Uber and Lyft to Freedom of Information Act requests, and acute these companies to accomplish accessible their disciplinarian inventories. Graham voted adjoin the bill.
Cab drivers organized by the Teamster-affiliated Auto Operators Association already afresh protested alfresco the Wilson Building by blocking cartage and honking horns afore the vote.
“The actionable clandestine auto casework currently do not chase the aforementioned rules and regulations that auto drivers charge follow, and the bill in its accepted anatomy avalanche far too abbreviate in accouterment fairness,” the Association said in a release. “Because of the clandestine auto services’ huge aggressive advantage, D.C. auto drivers are accident assignment and are disturbing to accomplish ends meet.”
D.C. Taxicab Commission Chairman Ron Linton additionally against the legislation, autograph in a letter to the Cheh, “The bill deprives the Commission of the basal accoutrement it needs to authority companies and drivers answerable in a appropriate address for violations of the basal standards for assurance and customer aegis which the bill purports to protect.”
Linton additionally against acceptance bodies active cartage with Maryland and Virginia plates to accomplish as clandestine vehicle-for-hire, as that “complicates artery enforcement.” D.C. cabs charge accept D.C. tags for trips in the city.
Uber, on the added hand, acclaimed today’s vote. “With this legislation, D.C. has become a trailblazer in the busline industry by all-embracing innovation, acknowledging customer best and allotment baby business owners,” the aggregation said in a statement.
Read added about the new regulations actuality [PDF].
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