Dallas, Texas—A much anticipated face-off took place at Dallas City Hall on January 21 between app-based, transportation-for-hire services, Uber and Lyft, and Dallas’ traditional car services, limousines, and taxicabs. Although no resolutions were reached and no votes were taken by the Dallas City Council’s Transportation and Trinity River Project Committee as of yet, all sides made their cases quite clear.
Each faction got to share its opinion: Taxi drivers complained that limousine drivers are overcharging customers, jumping in lines at hotels, and stealing their business. Lyft users spoke of the “joyous” experience that comes from making new pals while ridesharing. Uber’s Justin Kintz, one of the company’s public policy gurus, insisted that Uber already runs background checks and carries a million-dollar insurance policy that the city requires.
Michael Morris, the transportation director for the North Central Texas Council of Governments, urged the council to wait until it finishes writing a region-wide policy, which should be done within 60 to 90 days.
“We need more technology and more enforcement,” Morris says. But right now the region is troubled by “in-consistent standards and a lack of enforcement,” he says. Morris also suggested the concept of instituting a single permit/license—what it’s calling a Regional Limousine Permit—for all cab, limousine, and ridesharing companies.
These ideas were seconded by Dallas Fort Worth Limousine Association (DFWLA) President Richard Weiner of Carey Dallas, who attended and spoke at the meeting. Weiner also stressed to the committee that “the present rules and regulations do not need to be changed; they only need to be enforced.”
Visit dfwlimoassociation.com for more information.