NYC reins in Uber with cap on ride-hail vehicles

NYC reins in Uber with cap on ride-hail vehicles

There's also an eclipsing number of ride-hailing vehicles on the road compared to taxis: About 80,000 drivers in the city are affiliated with four ridehailing companies - Juno, Lyft, Uber and Via - according to a recent report from The New School's Center for New York City Affairs.

NY just became the first city in the nation to cap the number of ride-sharing vehicles on its streets and require Uber, Lyft, and other companies to pay drivers a minimum rate. "It would also allow the Commission address incomes for app-based drivers, 85 percent of whom now make below minimum wage".

The package, opposed by major ride-hailing companies, is aimed at reducing traffic congestion and increasing driver paychecks in the wake of the explosive growth of for-hire vehicles.

"It's critical for New York to regulate minimum fare rates - the only source of income for drivers - across the taxi and app-dispatch sectors, so no worker gets left behind", wrote councilmember Adrienne Adams in a New York Times op-ed.

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said he meant to sign the bills into law, which would start the 12-month period where no new for-hire vehicle licenses would be issued, with an exception for wheelchair-accessible vehicles.

She said Uber will do whatever it takes to keep up with growing demand for its service and will work with city and state officials to pass "real solutions" like congestion pricing for cars in Manhattan. The same companies are now pushing back on the new proposals, including telling users through social media and on their apps that the legislation could make rides more scarce and more expensive. Three were taxi drivers reportedly facing financial issues.

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Six drivers have killed themselves in the past year, including one who shot himself in his auto in front of City Hall after railing against politicians and Uber in a newsletter column.

The New York Taxi Workers Alliance celebrated the vote, describing it on its website as a historic victory for its 18,000-member strong union.

"We will never stop working to ensure New Yorkers have access to reliable and affordable transportation in every borough", he said. "And this victory belongs to New Yorkers and our allies who have stood with us to say, not one more death, not one more fallen driver crushed by poverty and despair". Around 13,500 yellow cabs had the special licenses, called medallions, needed to pick up passengers on the street.

"And you know that yellow don't pick up black".

The move to tighten regulation in NY was in part prompted by several recent driver suicides. London cab drivers are planning legal action hoping to receive "millions of pounds in lost earnings".

'They're talking about putting a cap on Uber, do you know how hard it is for black people to get a yellow cab in New York City?' Rev. Al Sharpton wrote on Twitter.

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