An override of the governor’s veto on regulations of the so-called ride-sharing industry is on the agenda for legislators this week. The governor had said imposing new rules on companies like Uber, Lyft, and Sidecar, which allow customers to hail rides from their smartphones, could be left up to local governments. State Rep. Mike Zalewski (D-Riverside) feels statewide standards are needed because the industry is looking to grow outside of the Chicago area.
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“If Uber wants to bring its services to Rockford or Peoria, they should,” Zalewski said, “but ride-sharing vehicles travel over city and township lines all the time. That means you may be totally unprotected from riding from one town into another, depending on the local rule or ordinance, if there are any at all.” Zalewski’s legislation would require background checks, car inspections, and expanded insurance coverage from ride-sharing companies. Uber has claimed those rules would put them out of business in Illinois, though Zalewski says it’s already operating under stricter regulations in other states.
The legislation became an issue in the governor’s race, with Gov. Pat Quinn vetoing the bills after his Republican opponent Bruce Rauner came out against the regulations. Zalewski says the fact that Rauner is now Governor-elect hasn’t affected support from Republicans.
“There hasn’t been anyone that’s told me that Gov.-elect Rauner’s contacted them and said to change their vote, which to me, is a good sign,” Zalewski said.