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Taxi Company Mulls Lawsuit Over Uber, Lyft

Taxi Company Mulls Lawsuit Over Uber, Lyft
Posted Tuesday, June 3rd 2014 @ 2pm  by 700WLW News

(Cincinnati) -- In early May, dozens of cab drivers, and taxi owners went to City Hall to protest a new form of competition.  Specifically, they say car-for-hire services like Uber and Lyft provide a similar service to traditional cab companies, but are not held to the same standards, and laws.

Albert Brown, Jr.,  represents the West Side Cab Company, and says they're not happy about car for hire services like Uber.

Brown says while traditional taxis have to carry insurance to cover any injury to passengers, Uber doesn't.  He says liability insurance is a major expense for cab companies, and if Uber doesn't want the responsibility, then the public has a right to know.

Brown says his client, and other taxi companies just want Uber and Lyft to follow the same rules they have to follow.  City ordinances cover 66 sections, with an additional three pages of "do's and don't's" for drivers.

After the demonstration and public comments at City Hall, Cincinnati city solicitors started drawing up proposed ordinances to cover car for hire companies.  Brown says something could come before City Council later this month.  He says he has submitted a Freedom of Information Act request to see what's pending.  Brown says there have been memos and e-mails between local solicitors and "people outside of the City who apparently are approaching the City on Uber's behalf".

Brown says he wants to know if they can live with what's in proposed ordinances.  He says if City Council decides to adopt something that creates two classes of car-for-hire services, then that could be a serious equal protection issue. 

Brown says he and his client have not decided if they should sue the City.



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