Uber Sues St. Louis Taxi Regulator–and Launches Without Approval

Uber Sues St. Louis Taxi Regulator–and Launches Without Approval photo Uber Sues St. Louis Taxi Regulator–and Launches Without Approval

“I mean, it is extremely threatening that’s what might happen if you step into an Uber”.

“We have no authority to change that”, Hamilton said.

Among them: both taxis and Uber-style outfits would do their own checks on their drivers and cars and their insurance, but the county could do audits.

“It’s time for the county to look out for citizens and not special interests”, he said.

“You never satisfy Uber“, said Ryan.

Uber and the MTC have been locked in negotiations for more than a year over issues related to its vehicle-for-hire code, such as driver background checks. Miami-Dade hasn’t passed Uber-legalizing legislation yet, either, but is expected to do so in the coming year.

Broward’s proposed ordinance, if approved October 13, would pave the way for the app to be turned back on shortly thereafter.

Commissioner Lois Wexler said she refused to “play that game”.

Uber’s public policy director for the Southeast United States, Trevor Theunissen, and Uber’s general manager for Florida, Matt Gore, said after the meeting that they’re concerned the requirement can’t be met because they said such databases don’t exist nationally.

For example, the county ordinance disqualifies felons who have released from prison in the last seven years. Uber argued in its memo that “once an individual has paid his or her debt to society, they should be able to re-acclimate into society and earn a livelihood”. The commission, which is slated to meet today, will also be banned from enacting or enforcing new regulations.

-‘MORAL TURPITUDE’: A driver could be rejected if the division director, now Leonard Vialpando, believes he or she poses a threat to public safety, based on crimes of “moral turpitude”.

The idea behind the county’s original regulations was to require local, state, and national criminal records of anyone applying for an Uber or Lyft driver job.

“I’m confident we will work it out, ” Moskowitz said.

“Their argument is we’ve made it impossible for them to enter the market”. Uber said annual inspections with any certified mechanic should suffice.

In its lawsuit, Uber said the company has taken pains to make sure its service is reliable and safe, a concern of MTC commissioners.

Under what was proposed Thursday, companies like Uber would forge agreements with the airport separately, but would be required to do so and to pay any outstanding fees before operating in the county. Uber also wants to be allowed to black out “personally identifiable information”.

Meanwhile, cab-company representatives are threatening to pursue legal action if Uber is allowed to operate in Broward under the new lax laws. During that time, the company would have to obtain an opinion from the state, or favorable state legislation, to address the issue. Without waiting to see what was passed, the company launched service in St. Louis and St. Louis County, where the commission governs vehicles for hire, on Friday morning. The company said up until now, the city had been the largest metro area without the ridesharing system in the country. “We’ve just got to get it right for a regulatory environment that is not too heavy, and small companies can come in”.

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