Uber, Lyft rules being drafted; process could take months

It’s been almost two months since Gov. Brian Sandoval signed bills clearing the way for ride-hailing companies in Nevada, but it could be months more before companies such as Uber and Lyft actually hit the roads.

Members of the Nevada Transportation Authority met Thursday to take public comment about regulations for so-called transportation network companies, which allow people to hail rides through a smartphone app, and outlined several hurdles those rules still have to cross:

The three-member panel is accepting written public comment until Aug. 3. They will then finalize draft regulations and submit them to the Legislative Counsel Bureau for review.

Once the Legislative Counsel Bureau approves them, the authority will schedule a public hearing at least 30 days in the future. The adoption hearing will be the first time members of the authority can deliberate among themselves about the rules.

Any changes from the adoption hearing will be included in regulations that are submitted to state lawmakers on the Legislative Commission.

Once the Legislative Commission approves the regulations, ride-hailing companies’ applications can be processed.

Commissioner Keith Sakelhide said it’s unclear how long the full process will take; it depends on how fast the Legislative Counsel Bureau reviews the rules, when the Legislative Commission schedules a meeting and other variables.

Thursday’s meeting was the second workshop the authority has held to listen to public concerns.

Representatives from taxi companies have complained that ride-hailing companies weren’t subject to the random drug testing as they were. They also said there could be disputes between cab drivers and Uber drivers over pick-up areas outside Las Vegas hotels.

Nevada lawmakers approved bills allowing for the companies after extensive debate and deal-making.

The final compromise called for a 3 percent tax on cab and ride-hailing company fares in Nevada — money that lawmakers said would support road construction projects and budget priorities such as the University of Nevada, Las Vegas Medical School.


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