The City of Victoria is looking to suspend its present taxi policies to give taxi drivers the same requirements as ride-hailing services. (Black Press Media File Photo)

Victoria looks to suspend taxi obligations as ride hailing services arrive

Ten ride hailing companies are set to come to Greater Victoria in the new year

The City of Victoria is looking to revamp its taxi bylaws in anticipation of ride-hailing services coming to town in the new year.

According to the province, 10 ride hailing companies have applied to work in the Capital Region since policies were instated in September, meaning soon they will be on the streets.

Ride-hailing services must apply to both the province and the municipality for a business licence, but currently additional rules are in place at a municipal level for taxi drivers. In Victoria, for example, taxi drivers need to follow the city’s Vehicles for Hire bylaw which currently has no rules for ride-hailing services.

READ MORE: New ride-hailing company to launch in Victoria

“It’s unusual circumstances,” said city clerk Chris Coates, who is the lead on the city’s Ride Hailing Report. “The City has bylaws that apply to one stream of the industry and not the other.”

Additionally, there are duplications in the requirements set forth by the province and the City which adds additional time. In the meanwhile, if a company has a provincial licence and paid the mandatory business licence fees, the City is obligated to issue the business licence if additional policies aren’t in place. Policies are not required at a municipal level, but the City of Victoria has chosen put some in place.

Theoretically, Coates explained, this could mean that a ride hailing driver could get a licence faster than a taxi driver even if they applied at the same time.

ALSO READ: B.C. sets rules for ride hailing, same minimum fee as taxis

“That’s why we want to take those out of the mix and do a more fulsome review of passenger-directed vehicles,” Coates said.

As a result, city staff are proposing suspending the current taxi licensing and operating conditions while they review the current policies and decide how to move forward in the future.

“This would make it a more even playing field,” Coates said.

City staff are presenting these issues to council on Thursday, and hope to have a fuller analysis of possible new policies available in January.

nicole.crescenzi@vicnews.com

Like us on Facebook Send a Tweet to @NicoleCrescenzi
and follow us on Instagram

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Meet Arthur Heart, Oak Bay Avenue’s resident stickman

Contest winner dubs stickman Art Heart

Victoria council keeps its catered lunches at more than $10,000 per year

Two councillors tried to eliminate the expense, with widespread rejection

All Carlton Cards stores closing in the coming weeks

Schurman Retail Group stores across North America will close, including 79 in Canada

UPDATED: 12 Wet’suwet’en supporters arrested by VicPD

Protesters rallied against Coastal GasLink pipeline

Four things ‘not’ to do if you run into Prince Harry and Meghan in B.C.

Here is a list of some things you definitely should NOT do, according to the BBC

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Jan. 21

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

B.C.-based Coulson Aviation C-130 crashes in Australia

Three people are confirmed dead in the crash in New South Wales

New nasal spray launched in Canada to combat hypoglycemic shock in diabetics

Baqsimi is a nasal spray contains three milligrams of glucagon

B.C. RCMP spent roughly $750K on massive manhunt for Port Alberni men

Manitoba RCMP helped with 17-day search through the province’s northern terrain

Island Bakery in Cobble Hill to close

Cobble Hill store in business since 1982

Man killed by police in Lytton called 911, asking to be shot: RCMP

Howard Schantz, also known as Barry Schantz was killed following a standoff at his Lytton home

Canadian public health agencies ramping up preparations in response to new virus

Health officials have said there are no confirmed cases of the emerging coronavirus in Canada

Most Read