New York City extends cap on new Uber and Lyft vehicles
The New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) has voted to extend its cap on the number of licences for ride-hailing services such as Uber and Lyft for another year, reports The Verge. Last year, New York City Council approved legislation to halt new ride-hailing vehicle licences for a 12-month period, exempting wheelchair-accessible vehicles. The TLC has also amended a rule that limits the amount of time drivers can cruise without passengers in Manhattan below 96th Street. The rule restricts the amount of time ride-hailing drivers can spend without passengers to 31%, down from 41%.
Significance: The aim of the legislation is to improve the city's traffic congestion and protect drivers' income. Last year, the TLC established a minimum wage for ride-sharing drivers. Since 2015, the number of ride-hailing vehicles in the city has tripled, from about 12,600 in 2015 to about 80,000 in 2018, according to the TLC. New York City is the first major US city to impose such a cap, and if it proves to address the issues, then other cities might follow suit. This will be a blow for Uber as it is the biggest ride-hailing company in the US. The New York City Council had suggested a similar cap on ride-hailing services in 2015, but it stepped back from such a move as it did not attract enough support to pass the legislation.
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