Mass. TNC Drivers Face Background Checks Sooner

Posted on December 1, 2016

Drivers for Uber and Lyft in Massachusetts must pass a state-run background check by early April, sooner than expected, under a new agreement between the companies and Governor Charlie Baker’s administration.

The popular on-demand ride services already require their drivers to pass background checks conducted by third-party vendors before they can get on the road. But a law passed over the summer brought the state into the fold, requiring drivers to both pass the company check and one from the state.

Fingerprinting will continue to be a contentious issue. Scott Solombrino, CEO of Dav El / BostonCoach Chauffeured Transportation Network and a board director of the National Limousine Association, said the fight isn’t over. He expects to see legislation next year that would add the fingerprint check to the process.

“The state’s making an attempt to do the right thing based on how the law was written,” he said. “Good for the state, but it doesn’t change the fact we think there’s an even better system and it’s called fingerprinting.”

Taxi drivers are not required by state law to undergo fingerprinting, although they are in some cities, including Boston.

Solombrino said he wonders whether any current Uber drivers who passed the companies’ background checks will be forced off the road by the state’s check.

“That’s something we’ll know in the next six months: How many more people passed their background checks than passed the state’s review?” he said.

Boston Globe article here

Related Topics: background checks, Boston operators, Lyft, Massachusetts operators, regulatory enforcement, Scott Solombrino, state regulations, TNCs, Uber

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