Charlotte City Council committee to consider digital dispatch re - | WBTV Charlotte

Charlotte City Council committee to consider digital dispatch regulations again


Charlotte City Council's Community Safety Committee will again take up the controversial issue of regulating digital dispatch at its next meeting in September.  

City officials met with workers from Uber and Lyft over the summer in an attempt to draft an agreement about regulations. No agreement has been reached yet.

A spokesperson for Uber told WBTV "the company is not opposed to regulations - they want it to be the right regulations."

Uber officials said they'll continue to working with city officials to come up with a "regulatory framework."

Last August, legislators in Raleigh passed a bill that prohibits cities from adopting an ordinance that regulates and licenses digital dispatch services. 

In June, Charlotte's City Attorney's office ruled that city council members have the authority to oversee all passenger vehicles for hire - traditional or digital dispatch. 

City officials say they believe they can regulate digital dispatch because the drivers are independent contractors. 

Passengers of digital dispatch use a application on mobile devices to find out where the closest driver is to their location, and request a ride. 

Digital dispatch drivers don't have to abide by strict city regulations that traditional taxi cab drivers face with permits, fares, and criminal background checks.

At the Community Safety Committee meeting in June, city staff gave council members some recommendations for oversight - including "regulating vehicles and drivers of digital dispatch companies, and setting a maximum fare for time or distance to be charged." 

Committee members told city workers to meet with digital dispatch companies to see if an agreement could be reached. 

No agreement was reached so the committee will consider staff recommendations. 

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