November 20, 2017

Winnipeg
-9° C, Light snow

Full Forecast

Advertisement

Advertise With Us

Uber-concerned taxi-industry reps optimistic after meeting with mayor

COLIN CORNEAU / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS FILES</p>

COLIN CORNEAU / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS FILES

Several local taxi industry representatives said their hour-long meeting with Mayor Brian Bowman Friday morning was positive and they’re looking forward to working with the administration on developing new regulations for the industry.

Jas Pal, a vice-president with Duffy’s, and about a half-dozen other representatives from Duffy’s and Unicity met with Bowman and other senior city officials on their concerns on how city hall will regulate the taxi industry.

“We know they have a lot of work to do and we can work together to make this better for the public, for ourselves and everybody else,” Pal said as he and the other taxi industry reps left the city administration building.

The meeting was called after the taxi industry staged a rally at the legislature to protest the provincial government’s passage of Bill 30, which allows ride-hailing services such as Uber to operate in the province, disbands the Manitoba Taxicab Board and gives city hall the power to regulate the industry in Winnipeg.

Subscribers Log in below to continue reading,
not a subscriber? Create an account to start a 60 day free trial.

Log in Create your account

Add a payment method

To read the remaining 311 words of this article.

Pay only 27¢ for articles you wish to read.

Hope you enjoyed your trial.

Add a payment method

To read the remaining 311 words of this article.

Pay only 27¢ for articles you wish to read.

Several local taxi industry representatives said their hour-long meeting with Mayor Brian Bowman Friday morning was positive and they’re looking forward to working with the administration on developing new regulations for the industry.

Jas Pal, a vice-president with Duffy’s, and about a half-dozen other representatives from Duffy’s and Unicity met with Bowman and other senior city officials on their concerns on how city hall will regulate the taxi industry.

"We know they have a lot of work to do and we can work together to make this better for the public, for ourselves and everybody else," Pal said as he and the other taxi industry reps left the city administration building.

The meeting was called after the taxi industry staged a rally at the legislature to protest the provincial government’s passage of Bill 30, which allows ride-hailing services such as Uber to operate in the province, disbands the Manitoba Taxicab Board and gives city hall the power to regulate the industry in Winnipeg.

Representatives from Duffy’s and Unicity, Winnipeg’s two dominant taxi co-operatives, said they were disappointed with the Pallister government’s failure to meet with them and to address their concerns over safety and desire for a level playing field with the ride-hailing services.

More than 350 cabs circled the Manitoba Legislative Building three times before moving onto Broadway, north along Smith Street and on to city hall, which they circled before disbanding.

Premier Brian Pallister told reporters he has had conversations with taxi drivers and owners about the changes to the industry but defended his decision to not hold formal talks with industry representatives. He said any regulatory changes will now be the responsibility of municipal governments and that's who the industry should be meeting.

A provincial government spokesman added that while Pallister has not met with the taxi industry association, former Municipal Relations Minister Eileen Clarke did have formal discussions with representatives prior to August.

Pal said the taxi industry wants assurances that the same safety standards — including driver-seat shields, panic buttons, driver training, criminal background checks — that are applied to cabs are also imposed on ride-hailing services.

Pal said he and the others left their meeting with Bowman with the feeling their concerns will be addressed as city hall develops the regulations to govern taxis and ride-hailing services. But no further meetings were scheduled.

Bowman was not available for questions, but his office released the following statement:

"The mayor is encouraged by the meeting with industry and feels it was a positive dialogue. The meeting today was primarily to listen to suggestions and concerns from the industry.

"The feedback that was received will be considered as part of the preparations for the administrative report that will be forthcoming from the public service. The mayor thanks the industry for their positive contributions to this discussion."

aldo.santin@freepress.mb.ca

Read more by Aldo Santin.

Advertisement

Advertise With Us

History

Updated on Friday, November 10, 2017 at 2:50 PM CST: Writethrough

You can comment on most stories on The Winnipeg Free Press website. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or digital subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to The Winnipeg Free Press print or digital subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to The Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective January 2015.