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 Policy Order Resolution
  O-15
  Calendar item #1
  IN CITY COUNCIL
  August 10, 2015
  September 21, 2015
COUNCILLOR SIMMONS
VICE MAYOR BENZAN

WHEREAS:

A number of taxi drivers recently conducted a one-day work stoppage as a means of calling attention to the need for regulation of "ride-sharing" companies like Uber and Lyft, and the need to create a level playing field for any locally-operating businesses that provide personal transportation services for a fee; and
    
WHEREAS: In recent years, the rise of companies like Uber and Lyft, which are hailed via smartphone apps and easily paid for electronically, has disrupted the generations-old taxi business model not only in Cambridge and Massachusetts, but across the globe; and
   
WHEREAS: The City of Cambridge has explored the question of how to best regulate companies like Uber and Lyft while also ensuring that those who make a living by providing rides to others will be able to do so in a safe and fair environment, and the City concluded that this is an issue that must be decided by the Commonwealth, in order to ensure that these companies are all governed under a universal set of standards and guidelines, regardless of where they are interacting with the consumers; and
   
WHEREAS: As Cambridge and other municipalities wait for the Commonwealth to act on this, those who own taxi medallions have seen their livelihoods threatened, the medallions they have invested their life's savings into have been plummeting in value, and many of these individuals are rightfully upset that the government has not been quick enough in working to ensure that all personal transportation companies are operating under the same set of rules and guidelines; and
   
WHEREAS: The City has a vested interest in ensuring that local consumers are able to access those businesses that wish to cater to their needs and vie for their patronage, and that all local businesses are governed by a standard set of rules and regulations that keep the services safe and the competition fair; now therefore be it 

 

 
RESOLVED: That the City Council hereby goes on the record urging Governor Baker and the State Legislature to move expeditiously in issuing guidelines and regulations that will ensure that taxi services and ride-sharing companies like Uber and Lyft are able to operate on a fair and even plane throughout the Commonwealth; and be it further
   
RESOLVED: That the City Clerk be and hereby is requested to forward suitably engrossed copies of this resolution to Governor Baker and to the members of the Cambridge Delegation to the State House on behalf of the entire City Council.

NO ACTION TAKEN SEPTEMBER 21, 2015 - ACTION TAKEN ADOPTING ORDER ON AUGUST 10, 2015 STANDS
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