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Public meeting for Oshawa’s ride sharing

By Joel Wittnebel/The Oshawa Express

The City of Oshawa may still not have all the answers when it comes to how to deal with ride-sharing companies like Uber and Lyft, but after extensive consultations, they’re getting ready to share what they’ve learned.

Over the course of the summer, city staff have been carrying out a number of consultations with not only members of the public, but stakeholders and companies from the taxi industry and designated driving industry as well.

Originally, that information and potential policy options were set to go before councillors on Sept. 11, however, due to the “substantial volume of information to present” staff have requested that a separate meeting be held at a later date in order to bring these options forward.

Following a motion approved by councillors on Sept. 25, staff will be looking to schedule a special meeting of the Corporate Services committee in order to share potential options with council.

Staff note that stakeholders will be provided with two weeks notice ahead of any meeting date. As of press time, no meeting had been scheduled.

This decisions follows an earlier report delivered to councillors ahead of their summer recess that laid out all of the potential players in the ride sharing economy, or what the city is now calling “transportation network companies (TNCs). These include businesses such as Uber and Lyft that allow people to hail rides via an app.

And while that report laid out the city’s knowledge on the topic, it had some councillors shaking their heads due to a lack of steps for moving forward to deal with the issue of TNCs.

Currently, under the city’s taxi-cab bylaw, these companies are operating illegally in the city.