Today's date is January 24, 2022

Orlando City Council greenlights Uber and Lyft regulations

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This afternoon, the Orlando City Council unanimously approved regulations that would allow ride-sharing companies Uber, and Lyft to legally operate in the City Beautiful.

The Council amended a plan that would have allowed Uber and Lyft to operate under a fee scale that would have charged twice as much as local taxi companies, to a scale that allows the two to operate under the same rate. And cuts the application fee from $500 to $250 dollars, that was seen as an entry barrier by supporters for the application that connects riders with drivers.

“I would say the different interested parties in this, have different interests” Mayor Buddy Dyer said “Our job is to balance those interests and to place public safety above all else, I’d think, and Uber can speak for themselves that they’d prefer not to provide us with information relating to any of their drivers, but I don’t find that particularly palatable, to not have an idea who the people are that are picking up residents in their cars. I think we’ve done a nice job of making it fair for everybody in terms of what the fares are going to be, everybody has the same rules applicable to them, we’ve compromised there as well, so I think we’ve come a long way.”

The regulation allows Uber to conduct background checks through third party companies approved by the City, as Taxis currently do now.

Uber and Lyft Drivers, the latter who wore pink shirts in support of the company did have objections to setting a minimum rate and operating as a “for hire” vehicles. While the sentiment, according to City Officials from the companies, is that they didn’t do enough for Uber, they agreed it was a start and didn’t rule out the two coming back in the future for another change to the regulations.

“I think it’s ridiculous for any sort of municipality to assert itself, into the lives and the day to day operations of any business to try and impose any sort of rules like this.” said one Uber supporter “Clearly, the consumers that are out there, are educated and want to make the best decisions for themselves and are finding a true value in what companies like Uber and Lyft have brought to Central Florida”

The vote ended what had been a six month war between the City and Uber, that led to drivers getting their cars towed, and threats from OIA to sue the companies for picking up from the Airport. Rideshare applications are viewed as a threat to local Taxi renters like Mears Transporation, who have been politically involved in the past and lobbied heavily to have the tougher regulations passed.

The City Council unanimously approved regulations allowing Uber to operate in Orlando

The City Council unanimously approved regulations allowing Uber to operate in Orlando

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