A Simple TNC Approach From A Small Place

Posted on February 17, 2016 by - Also by this author

Looks like a taxi stand. Exactly.
Looks like a taxi stand. Exactly.
Thanks to the local government of Dewey Beach, Delaware, for resolving the regulatory controversy surrounding TNCs once and for all. May it set the universal standard throughout the land. From a recent newspaper report:

In Dewey Beach, Uber, Lyft and other [transportation network companies] will now fall under the same umbrella as taxis and limousines, with a $109 fee to boot. The town's council unanimously approved a measure to begin treating the services as proper taxicab businesses and drivers with those ridesharing services must obtain a business license through Dewey officials if they wish to conduct business in the town.

That's what I call simple and easy to understand. Obvious and fair. Long-awaited and long-lasting. TNCs are cabs. We've been saying this for years, despite confusion among elite government officials, regulators, politicians, TNC industry blowhards about what defines a TNC. Hint: Moving a person from point A to point B. It doesn't matter how or when the vehicle is summoned. That should be up to each provider.

If this means TNCs must charge their clients more, then so be it. That's the price of fairness, safety and even compliance. You can't have something for next-to-nothing and only the bad lunches are close to free. 

The way this measure came about also serves as a model in courage, on the part of limousine operators and local government leaders. There's not been much of that going around on the TNC regulatory issue. From the article:

Turner Hastings, co-owner of the limousine and charter service Jolly Trolly, pushed Dewey Beach officials to crack down on Uber drivers.

"A fair playing field is what we stand for. In this town, I think it's a business license," Hastings said in December. Council seemed to agree, as pushes for more lenient terms were met with dismissal by the majority of the body.

Congrats to Mr. Hastings and the Dewey Beach Town Council for showing how to resolve this issue. 

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