The Roseburg City Council Monday unanimously approved an ordinance regulating ride-hailing services like Uber and Lyft.
There was briefly an Uber service in town back in February, but the business stopped offering rides after the city threatened it with fines of up to $1,500 a day for failing to follow the city’s then-existing ordinances.
The city then began working on an ordinance that would allow Uber and Lyft to operate in town, along with traditional taxi operators.
The ordinance approved Monday gives the city recorder authority to determine whether a driver is fit, taking into consideration the driver’s prior criminal history and driving safety record. It also mandates the driver provide proof the vehicle is no more than 15 years old and that it has passed a safety inspection. A $1 million liability insurance policy is also required.
City officials consulted with an Uber representative about the changes to the city’s rules. City Recorder Amy Sowa said after Monday’s meeting it’s her understanding that while Uber isn’t happy about the safety inspection, that won’t be a “deal breaker” for the company bringing its service to town. She said Eugene has a similar regulation.
Also Monday, the council approved fees that would charge ride-hailing companies like Uber or Lyft $480 for an operator’s license, with driver’s permits being additional. The fees are comparable to the fees the city charges taxi companies.
The vote Monday followed the second reading of the ordinance, and the city councilors made no comments about the decision. The issue had been discussed at several previous meetings.