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Hollywood residents who want to use ride share companies may have to wait awhile.
The Broward County Commission has asked that a cease and desist letter be sent to vehicle for hire companies. The most well-known organizations are Uber and Lyft which have been operating in Broward County since August. Taxi cab operators are strongly opposed to these companies.
The way ride share companies work is that an Internet application is used to match up drivers in privately owned cars to customers who need transportation. They are referred to as transportation network companies and are not regulated by Broward County and not in compliance with the motor carrier ordinance which requires oversight over insurance, inspections, criminal background checks and licensing.
“We are a technology company. We are an application that you’re able to download and we connect riders all over the world. We don’t employ any of the drivers. We operate in over two hundred cities,” said David Barmore, a member of Uber’s Public Policy Team. “In the past six months, fourteen cities have introduced new transportation network company ordinances that encompass our technology. So I hope that we can begin the process and that Uber and our partner drivers have a seat at the table to continue this dialogue,” said Barmore.
“I am a big consumer advocate. I think there’s so much information that we need to have before we can move to the next conversation,” noted Commissioner Lois Wexler. “At some point we need someone from Uber to sit at the table with us, someone from Yellow Cab so that we can learn more. We need a workshop type setting.”
Members of the Broward Commission have expressed concern about consumer safety, accountability and surge pricing. With surge pricing, prices change during the day depending on demand. Commissioners have raised questions about how these transportation companies fit in with current cab services, which are licensed and regulated.