NYC votes to cap Uber and Lyft vehicles

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The one-year cap - which won't apply to wheelchair accessible vehicles or in certain underserved areas deemed not to be affected by congestion - is meant to make way for a study on longer term regulations and standards for the industry. The cap will halt new ride-hailing vehicle licenses for one year while the council investigates how to mitigate issues that came with the influx of companies like Uber and Lyft, mostly related to congestion and driver wages.

"Our city is directly confronting a crisis that is driving working New Yorkers into poverty and our streets into gridlock", de Blasio said. "I look forward to signing these bills into law".

City officials said that in the intervening years the number of for-hire vehicles on the streets has surged from 63,000 to more than 100,000, forcing drivers to compete for scarce fares and making it hard for any of them to earn a living wage.

The package of bills passed also allows city officials to create a minimum pay rate for drivers, The New York Times reported.

FILE PHOTO: An illuminated sign appears in a Lyft ride-hailing vehicle in Los Angeles, California, U.S. September 21, 2017. They say the growth of ride-hailing apps has also worsened traffic congestion. The Council's newly imposed minimum wage will assist the company in those efforts, he said. "These sweeping cuts to transportation will bring New Yorkers back to an era of struggling to get a ride, particularly for communities of color and in the outer boroughs", said Joseph Okpaku, Lyft's vice president of public policy, in an emailed statement. That wouldn't bode well for Uber, which is considering going public next year.

"More than 65,000 working families will be getting a desperately needed raise because of today's vote".

Lawmakers who backed the measure cited congestion in the city and hoped that it would stop the decline in compensation for drivers, according to WABC in NY. Critics of the cap worry ride-hail vehicles will become tougher to find and more expensive, while NYC taxi drivers, who often lament that ride-hail services threaten their earning potential, consider the vote a major win. Uber and Lyft support congestion-based road pricing in part because it targets all private vehicles, rather than singling out ride-sharing.



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