Vancouver has become the first B.C. city to approve ride-hailing regulations ahead of services hitting roadways later this year.
On Wednesday, city councillors approved a $100 annual fee for ride-hailing drivers working within the city limits. They also approved to decrease the yearly licensing fee for taxi drivers from the current $600 to $100.
City staff made a number of recommendations to councillors after meeting with organizations and interest groups, including the local transportation advisory committee.
The city will also be moving ahead with charging a pick-up and drop-off tax of 30 cents each for rides within the downtown core from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., in order to ease congestion.
The motion was not supported unanimously, however Coun. Sarah Kirby-Yung tweeted that while she supports the anti-congestion fees, she is weary of the city making rules within its jurisdiction when the Passenger Transportation Board has already said zones for ride hailing will stretch across various municipalities.
I’m 100% supportive #rideshare. And I support pick-up & drop-off congestion fees. But don’t support Vancouver going it alone moving ahead with per vehicle fee and taxi-like model vs prioritizing an inter-municipal model w city partners like @MayorStewart @BradWestPoCo & others. pic.twitter.com/yYZmOmsiSc
— Sarah Kirby-Yung 楊瑞蘭 (@sarahkirby_yung) October 2, 2019
A recent poll by Research Co., which surveyed 800 Metro Vancouverites about their concerns on upcoming ride-hailing services, found that wheelchair accessibility fleets, road congestion and drivers’ working conditions top the list.
The NDP government has promised that services will be up and running by the end of the year.