Council Approves Balanced Approach to Ride-Sharing in Greater Sudbury
Jun 29, 2016
Greater Sudbury Council has approved a new by-law regulating vehicles for hire and amendments to the existing taxi, limousine and shuttle by-law, effective August 31, 2016. Together, the by-laws will create a level playing field in the competition for paid fares by existing taxi and limousine companies and the emerging ride-sharing or vehicle-for-hire industry.
In March 2016, City of Greater Sudbury Council passed a motion that directed City of Greater Sudbury staff to draft a by-law to prepare the municipality for ride-sharing or vehicle-for-hire companies.
Ride -sharing uses technology to connect passengers with private drivers who provide transportation for a fee, usually using a Smartphone application and GIS technology. Currently, ride-sharing companies have not set up operations in the area.
“By implementing this by-law, we will be able to ensure the safety of our citizens while at the same time offering more options on travelling in Greater Sudbury,” Mayor Brian Bigger said.
Amendments to current Taxi by-law as well as the new ride-sharing by-law will come into effect August 31 and will require drivers to adhere to the following criteria:
- Both taxi and ride-share vehicles must have a minimum of $2 million in liability insurance. Ride-share companies also carry general commercial insurance above and beyond the insurance required by individual vehicle owners.
- Vehicles must have a decal that identifies them as a ride-sharing vehicle.
- Drivers must comply with airport policies if they want to pick-up or drop-off at that location. Greater Sudbury Airport sets its own policies with approval from the Greater Sudbury Airport Board of Directors.
- Both taxi and ride-share companies must have an Ontario address where the City of Greater Sudbury can communicate with them.
- Ride-share drivers will be restricted to app-based activity only, while taxi companies may continue to use dispatch, hail and taxi stand methods as well as app-based requests similar to ride-share applications.
“We are committed to doing everything we can to protect safety while respecting the wishes of our citizens,” Caroline Hallsworth, Executive Director of Administrative Services for the City of Greater Sudbury said.
“We have listened to private industry and public opinion and put forth our best effort to find a middle ground which allows ride-sharing companies to serve as broker for its drivers and allows the conventional taxi industry to function more like a ride-sharing program. We think we’ve come up with a solution that will work for both.”
For more information regarding ride-sharing or taxi by-laws, please visit our website at www.greatersudbury.ca or call 3-1-1