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Uber, Lyft Push Back on SLC Transportation Ordinance Proposal

Alfredo Mendez via Flickr

The Salt Lake City council is set to pass an ordinance next week requiring ride-share drivers to comply with local ground transportation laws. But the companies, Uber, Lyft and Sidecar have launched a campaign to fight the proposal.

The ads on Facebook ask the public to urge members of the Salt Lake City council to vote “no” on the new rules-saying it will kill ridesharing in the city.  The ordinance requires drivers undergo city background checks and vehicle safety inspections—something Lyft and Uber already do privately.

That’s why Noah Theran, a spokesman for The Internet Association, which acts as trade lobby for internet companies says the ordinance is a pointless duplication. 

“We’re hoping first and foremost that the city council will go back to the drawing board, delay the vote and come up with ride-sharing ordinances that are workable for all parties involved,” Theran says.

Salt Lake City Councilman Charlie Luke says there is a great deal of misinformation about the ordinance-noting  the drivers for the so-called Transportation Network Companies or TNC’s like Lyft are already being fined for non-compliance. 

“The reality is, if we vote against this ordinance, TNC’s will remain banned in Salt Lake City,” Luke says.  

A spokesperson for Uber says the company does not intend to comply with the city’s ordinance should it pass. The council will take a vote on the issue November 25th

Whittney Evans grew up southern Ohio and has worked in public radio since 2005. She has a communications degree from Morehead State University in Morehead, Kentucky, where she learned the ropes of reporting, producing and hosting. Whittney moved to Utah in 2009 where she became a reporter, producer and morning host at KCPW. Her reporting ranges from the hyper-local issues affecting Salt Lake City residents, to state-wide issues of national interest. Outside of work, she enjoys playing the guitar and getting to know the breathtaking landscape of the Mountain West.
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