Houston City Council continues to work behind the scenes on whether or not to allow new ride-sharing services in the Bayou City. Taxi companies sued to block companies Uber and Lyft from operating, now council is trying to negotiate a compromise.
Councilman Michael Kubosh wants a level playing field.
“I want to make sure they are licensed and they have been checked out with criminal background checks, I want to make sure they have proper insurance on their car in case there's an accident,” Kubosh tells KTRH News.
However, the growing demand for convenient and cheaper mobile app transportation includes users like the High Tech Texan Michael Garfield.
“In many cases they speak the same language, you know they have a great car instead of a taxicab with a plexiglass divider between the driver and you, there are number of different pluses,” says Garfield.
Unlike taxi drivers, those working for Uber or Lyft can be anybody, using their own vehicles to give rides.
“You're able to quickly find out how many seconds away they are, and not even be able to pay because everything is done through a transaction without any cash, it's so simple,” says Garfield.
Kubosh calls it illegal.
“I asked one of the drivers for one of the companies have you contacted your insurance company? He said 'no, they don't know I'm doing ride-sharing,” he says.
City Council plans to vote on the issue by the end of the month.