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Rail News: Federal Legislation & Regulation

House T&I Chair DeFazio warns Uber, Lyft not to skip hearing


House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) is warning the chief executives of Uber and Lyft not to miss tomorrow's hearing on issues related to ride-hailing companies.

The Subcommittee on Highways and Transit hearing, titled, "Examining the Future of Transportation Network Companies: Challenges and Opportunities," will explore issues pertaining to the ride-hailing industry. Both executives declined previous invitations for representatives from their respective companies to testify, committee staff members said in a press release.

In letters to Uber Chief Executive Officer Dara Khosrowshahi and Lyft CEO Logan Green, DeFazio cited recent news reports about concerns directly and indirectly related to Uber and Lyft.

Those concerns include "sexual predation by drivers, the need for background checks and deactivation of dangerous drivers, and inadequate wages," DeFazio's letters stated.

DeFazio wrote that he intends to introduce legislation to address many of the issues, which will be raised at tomorrow's hearing.

"These include conditions governing your partnerships with states and local governments and transit agencies, the labor impacts of your business model, and disturbing reports of public safety problems among those who use your platform," he wrote. "If you do not send a representative to testify at the hearing, you leave the committee little choice but to make these policy decisions without your input.”

In recent years, many transit-rail agencies have developed agreements with transportation network companies such as Uber and Lyft to provide passengers with first-and-last mile service between train stations and their final destinations.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 10/15/2019