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City Council to vote to 'make it more likely' Uber or Lyft could operate in Eugene

PKG-MERCER ISLAND UBERS.transfer_frame_5561.jpg
UBER. (Photo: KOMO News)

EUGENE, Ore. - The Eugene City Council is scheduled to vote Monday night on changes to city code that would "make it more likely" for a ride-sharing company like Uber or Lyft to operate here.

The meeting agenda includes proposed changes to the Public Passenger Vehicle code.

"The purpose of the proposed changes is to make it more likely for Transportation Network Companies (TNC) to operate in Eugene while continuing to maintain important community safety standards," according to the City Council agenda.

The City Council in February directed staff to draft proposed changes based on the City of Medford's code.

Medford adopted the code in December, and Uber and Lyft are currently operating in the southern Oregon city.

Under the proposed changes, everyone driving for a "vehicle-for-hire" company would have to possess a valid certification card issued by the City of Eugene.

Under the changes, to receive such a card, a person would:

  1. The driver completes whatever "onboarding" process is required by the individual PPV company
  2. If the driver is approved by the PPV company, the PPV company provides notice to the driver that he/she must obtain a driver certification card from the City.
  3. To qualify for a certification from the City, the driver provides the City with verification from the PPV company, which may include a third-party background check, proof of a vehicle inspection conducted by a certified mechanic and proof of insurance.
  4. If the driver passed a background check conducted by an approved third party through the PPV company on-boarding process, the driver will be issued an immediate certification. In this case a second background check will be conducted by EPD, a process that typically takes 3-7 days.
  5. If a third-party background check was not conducted by the PPV company, the driver will be issued a certification upon successfully passing the background check conducted by EPD.
  6. Drivers must renew their certification annually.

The City Council meets at 7:30 p.m. in Harris Hall, 125 East 8th Avenue. You can watch live online:

If the measure passes with 6 or more votes, it takes effect immediately. If it passes with fewer than 6 votes, it takes effect in 30 days, according to the staff report.