Council opens door for transportation network companies
CALGARY - City Council has paved the way for new rules that will expand transportation options for Calgarians.
City Council has approved recommendations from Administration to amend the Livery Transport Bylaw to regulate Transportation Network Companies (TNCs) offering private for-hire vehicle services. Council directed Administration to draft bylaw amendments that will allow private for-hire vehicle services like Uber to legally operate in Calgary.
The amendments, to come back to Council by mid-February, will provide for a hybrid Open/Controlled entry system that levels the playing field for TNCs and the taxi and limousine industry. Under the new system, private for-hire vehicles can operate if there is appropriate vehicle insurance as required by the Province of Alberta and drivers meet specified training, security and licencing requirements.
“The City welcomes innovation and believes in creating opportunities for new ideas to thrive and grow,” said Marc Halat, manager of Compliance Services with The City. “As we work towards defining the new option, we will continue to ensure citizen safety by enforcing the current bylaw.”
The City continues to inform drivers, passengers and the general public about risks involved in current operation of private for-hire vehicle services. The Government of Alberta has issued an advisory notice on ride sharing services and the insurance risk they currently pose to themselves and the public, noting any third party involved in an accident in or with one of these vehicles may not have adequate or appropriate insurance. Additional risks relate to the lack of oversight regarding vehicle inspections on private for-hire vehicles and the level of training and security checks drivers undergo.
The City is also moving ahead with an application for a temporary injunction to halt private for-hire vehicle services until safety, insurance and regulatory requirements are met. A hearing is scheduled in Court of Queen’s Bench November 20.
The City enforces the Livery Transport Bylaw to ensure public safety, service quality and consumer protection. To learn more about livery transport services n Calgary, visit calgary.ca/taxi.
Watch Mayor Naheed Nenshi’s Q&A on Council’s decision.