Uber faces taxi regulations in ACT
Everybody wins, or maybe. An excerpt from today's AAP newsfeed.
Uber will arrive in the ACT in a month but its drivers will face similar rules to the taxi industry as the territory becomes the first jurisdiction to regulate ride-sharing services.
Regulations will be introduced in two stages.
The first, to start from October 30, requires ride-share drivers to be accredited and registered, with criminal and driving history checks, and have safety checks done on their cars.
Drivers must be alcohol and drug free. Booking services have to have customer complaint mechanisms and surge pricing will be banned during emergencies.
A second stage of regulation, starting after legislation is passed, will require ride-share drivers to have compulsory third party and property insurance.
There will be training requirements for drivers and passengers won't be allowed to pay cash unless cars have security cameras in them.
Taxi drivers facing increased competition will see their licence fees halve on October 30 from the $20,000 charged now, and then drop again to $5,000 in 2017.
Hire care licence fees will drop from $4,600 to $100.
And people wanting to be drivers for Uber or other ride-sharing services will have to pay a $150 each year in licence and accreditation fees, plus charges for vehicle inspections and background checks.
Only taxis will be able to pick up people from cab ranks and off the street - all other drivers must arrange pre-booked fares.