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Should Local Governments be Allowed to Regulate Uber?

Years of fighting among local governments, the Legislature and ridesharing companies such as Uber and Lyft could soon come to an end.

Lawmakers have sent to Gov. Rick Scott legislation that would prohibit local government from regulating the companies. Instead, the companies would need to meet statewide insurance and background check standards only.

The vote was unanimous in the House and nearly so in the Senate.

“This strikes the right balance of regulation and making sure that there’s plenty of access for Floridians,” said Sen. Jeff Brandes, R-St. Petersburg, who has sponsored the legislation in the Senate for the last four years.

Uber and Lyft have argued that being subjected to different rules in all 67 counties and more than 400 cities and towns made it hard to do business.

“We go from a patchwork of local regulations that were in conflict to each other to a statewide regime that provides harmony, stability and certainty for riders and drivers alike,” said Colin Tooze, spokesman for Uber.

With the news of the law passing, Tooze refused to say what, if any, expansion Uber plans in the state. Continue Reading

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