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Spelman plans TNC amendment

Thursday, October 16, 2014 by Tyler Whitson

City Council Member Bill Spelman plans an amendment during today’s Council meeting to solve an insurance conundrum that is part of an ordinance that would temporarily legalize transportation network companies such as Lyft and Uber. The amendment, which Spelman provided to the Monitor, appears to be modeled after an amendment to California’s new regulations. It states that the TNC is required to provide limited coverage to its drivers while the driver is logged in to the app but has not accepted a ride. This would replace language that requires TNCs to provide primary commercial coverage during that window. It also says that the driver can be covered by “(TNC) insurance maintained by a participating driver,” a type of hybrid insurance that is not yet available, but presumably will be in the future. Meanwhile, a Wednesday news release says a statewide telephone survey commissioned by Yellow Cab of Austin found that Texans want cities to require TNC drivers to pass “city-led” background checks, carry commercial insurance and adhere to standard per-mile rates, regardless of the time of day, that are “clearly expressed.”


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