Uber’s Bitterest City Council Foes Finally Have the Votes for a Crackdown

And They’re Completely Comfortable with Kicking the Company Out of Portland

Comments

1
where is the same level of hate for AirBnB? It's ruining many PDX neighborhoods. Completely ineffective City Council. I'm continually amazed at the whole lot's lack of grasp on reality. Time for the voters to wake up: Wheeler's a sham and the rest are tools.
2
I am all for trying to create an environment in which Uber and Lyft don't block bike lanes or do other illegal things in the course of their operation. I actually think dedicated pick up/drop off points could help quite a bit. That said kicking all ride sharing companies out of Portland is a great way to increase drunk driving and we don't need that. Fritz is the queen of doing something that has negative unintended consequences and not even trying to mitigate them. If she has an idea of how to move people around the city better than ride sharing I am all ears, but as long as the city council continues to allow Tri-met to run our transit system in a way that basically shuts down prior to last call we will need some sort of point to point transportation system.
3
Can we also not ignore the fact that Uber helps a lot people make ends meet? I know a few people who would've probably lost their apartments if they hadn't been able to fill in the gaps picking up irregular Uber shits. That's not to say the Uber doesn't have problems, or that we shouldn't regulate them better, but the idea of just kicking them out of the city strikes me as deeply stupid. Babies and bath water and all that.
4
Re: a link between TNCs and a reduction in drunk driving, the jury is still out on that: https://www.theverge.com/2017/10/4/16418…

From the article:
“For example, we found very strong effects in Portland, Oregon, where ride-sharing led to a 60 percent decrease in alcohol-involved crashes. But there are some very important caveats. We didn't observe these effects in all cities, and also the overall number of injury crashes didn't change in Portland or any other city, so it's also possible that ride-sharing increases non-alcohol crashes and there is no net change in the total number of crashes. We don't fully understand why that might be, so I think some caution is warranted.”

As far as Uber as an "employer" (I use that term loosely) is concerned, most Uber drivers I know are also Lyft drivers. And several of those have abandoned so-called "ride sharing" gigs altogether in favor of driving for Instacart or other gig-economy sporadic work that gives them more predictable wages under better conditions.
5
Why all the hate on Uber? I get that their corporate culture has been shit. Are the cab companies leaning on these guys? Uber and Lyft help keep parking congestion down, give people an option to go out to bars and restaurants and not worry about drunk driving, give job options for many. Why the hate?
6
I have had nothing but frustration with using Portland area cab companies, including an incident where my reserved cab ride to PDX failed to show up BECAUSE THE DRIVER OVERSLEPT. I have been a dedicated Lyft user since they arrive and they have NEVER let me down. Could these services improve and be safer? Sure. But Portland cab companies have done almost nothing to improve their services. I say let them improve or die on the vine. Why are Amanda Fritz and company so hellbent on protecting them?

My god, I feel my blood pressure rise as I type this. Gotta go get a cocktail and calm down...
7
I didn't even bother to read any of the other details, as soon as I saw Fritz had one position, I knew that the intelligent, sane, rational, non-stupid position was the opposite of whatever she picked. One of the worst elected officials in the history of Portland, and that bar is really, really high.
8
A 60% decrease in alcohol related crashes seems like kind of a big deal to me. I've noticed a real change in behavior in people I know who used to drink and drive and don't anymore. Taxis in portland were completely useless on a friday or saturday night before, Lyft and Uber are very effective at getting people from A to B although I think their price is below the minimum cost of operation still at this point and will have to increase at some time it is clear that having a safe, cost effective, convenient way to get from point A to point B is reducing the number of drunk drivers on the road. If Fritz has a way to replicate that without Uber that is fine by me, but getting rid of all ride sharing with no plan in place is just dangerous and will result in more drunk drivers.
9
Great point, econoline, no matter what the economic effects of Uber/Lyft, the decrease in drunk driving is an incredibly important result of having a convenient push-to-summon ride service.
10
F*ck the sharing economy. Kick Uber and AirBnB and all the other companies that don't care about rules, regulations, safety of their customers or their employees (oh wait, they're not employees, right). The number or incidents of violence and discrimination involving these two companies are too high to manage and they don't even care other than caring about their profit margins and PR status. Everyone just LOVES these companies until they're the rape or robbery victim, discriminated against, shut out by their "employer," or otherwise wronged and find out they have no recourse because guess what no rules and no regulations and no legal recourse to do anything about it.
11
Stupid point, Christina - nobody has ever been discriminated against or assaulted in a traditional cab? Fuck outta here.
12
@Christina, do you not recall when the cab driver kicked the two women out of his cab for being gay on the 84? Uber and Lyft seem safer to me as they know who you are riding with, unlike if you just hail a cab on the street.
13
It is very concerning that Driver PAY is not ever mentioned in this article.
In February 2016, after 10 months of everyone “loving” how much cheaper and faster Lyft and Uber were than cabs…
Uber CUT RATES (AND DRIVER PAY) BY 30%.
They announced it as a “temporary” cut, but rates have never been restored. Many drivers net less than minimum wage after expenses. This is why Lyft and Uber never stop adding new drivers; so many quit because of the low pay.
When Uber rolled into town, they were given absolutely NO Minimum per-mile nor per-minute rates they would have to pay drivers and NO Maximum rates they can charge riders.
The City actually REMOVED Rate regulation From Cabs, rather than setting any financial rules for Uber and Lyft.
See https://thedriverscollectivepdx.com/tnc-… for details.
The Drivers Collective PDX has a
PETITION: Fair Pay for Lyft and Uber Drivers:
https://thedriverscollectivepdx.com/peti…
We will be presenting it to the City very soon.
ANYONE CAN SIGN IT: Drivers, Riders, and everyone who supports fairness.
Thanks!
Kazzrie Hekati
TheDriversCollectivePDX.com
14
I'd be happy if Portland became a Lyft-only town, as far as TNCs go. Every Uber/Lyft driver I talk to says they are much happier with Lyft. Uber's a toxic company, from the top on down.
15
We are not losing anything by requiring the rideshare companies to be good citizens. I have refused to take Uber for years based on its terrible ethics. Zero issue with cabbies and the occasional Lyft driver. If Uber opts out, new companies will definitely opt in. The rideshare industry is booming. Kick ‘em out!

16
Amazing how many people quote alcohol related incidents as a reason to allow the TNCs to continue to operate in Portland.

Are they under the impression there are no other companies providing these services? Locally owned companies that are being undercut by massively funded multinational corporations that subsidize both the riders and the drivers in hopes of driving smaller companies out of business?

Why do so many think it's okay to allow the TNCs to carry less insurance coverage than they require local companies to carry?

None of the TNCs have turned a profit to date, and they continue to use venture capital to create an unfair market. They have no regard for their drivers, discriminate against handicapped passengers, and blatantly break any local ordinance they find inconvenient. Why would we allow them to continue to operate in Portland?
17
@portlandmark, cab companies do not provide the same service. Call a cab and then if they even send a driver someone else gets in and the cab is gone. Half hour later you call again and they act like nothing is wrong and claim they are sending another cab. With Uber or Lyft you know how long it will be for the car to arrive and it never gets stolen by another rider. Until the cab companies fix this horrendous user experience I won't use them.
18
@econoline People steal your cab all the time? Maybe if you finish your drink and wait for them outside that won't happen so often.

In any event, it has zero to do with whether Uber should be regulated.
19
“If they choose not to operate in a safe manner,” Fritz says, “then it’s my responsibility to make them go away.”

We, the voters, will do the same for you Mandy, and for the same reason.

Fritz constantly oversteps--which might have something to do with why she has had two of her three departments removed from her control. Left with exactly one department (Parks)--a first in Portland city hall history--Fritz goes on camera to state that now she can focus on her main agenda which is "addressing inequality". Hey Amanda: no one elected you to focus on macro social issues (which are certainly beyond your abilities anyway)! Perhaps you can focus on managing our parks?