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New bill makes City of Winnipeg responsible for taxi industry, Uber

Metro News logo Metro News 2017-03-20 Stephanie Taylor - Metro

The province announced big changes to the regulation of the cab industry on Monday: New bill makes City of Winnipeg responsible for taxi industry, Uber© RYAN REMIORZ New bill makes City of Winnipeg responsible for taxi industry, Uber

The City of Winnipeg has one year to prepare to take over regulating the local cab industry and make way for Uber.

On Monday, Indigenous and Municipal Relations Minister Eileen Clarke tabled Bill 30, the Local Vehicle for Hires Act.

The new legislation dissolves the Manitoba Taxicab Board and transfers the responsibility of regulating the industry to the City of Winnipeg.

It also opens the doors for transportation network companies, such as Uber or Lyft, to enter the city by giving municipalities the power to enact relevant by-laws. .

“Right now the City of Winnipeg is the only one that’s under provincial legislation, all the other municipalities look after their own regulation of taxicabs,” explained board chairman Randy Williams.

“This just levels the playing field for all municipalities.”

Coun. Ross Eadie, who resigned from the taxicab board over concerns about Uber, says the city lacks the financial resources or expertise to take on regulation of the cab industry.

“The Manitoba government has just dumped on the city and I’m sure there will be more April 11 [provincial budget day],” he said Monday. 

Mayor Brian Bowman is scheduled to speak to reporters about the new legislation at 3:45 p.m. 

Making the city responsible for the cab industry and allowing Uber to enter the local market were two of 40 recommendations made in an external review of the industry, ordered by the former NDP government.

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