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)

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

ride hailing

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

Just Posted

Island Health has confirmed the first long term care facility outbreak in Greater Victoria at Veterans Memorial Lodge in Saanich. (Google Maps)
Island Health records first long-term care COVID outbreak in Greater Victoria

Veterans Memorial Lodge in Saanich confirms one positive staff member

Itty, a Siamese cat, has been missing since a house fire in Victoria’s Fernwood neighbourhood on Friday, Nov. 27. Her owner says she has white fur with blonde and grey markings. (Facebook/ROAM)
Cat goes missing after house fire in Fernwood neighbourhood

‘Itty’ has white fur, blonde and grey markings and blue eyes

An aerial view over Oak Bay. (Black Press Media File Photo)
An aerial view over Oak Bay and the Marina. Oak Bay residents pay the highest taxes on Vancouver Island. Don Denton/Black Press
Oak Bay secondary suites study considers units old and new

Secondary suites draft report due in new year

Westcoast Impressions plans to organize a COVID-19 friendly version of the event in 2021 at the Mary Winspear Centre after having cancelled the 2020 version against the backdrop of pandemic. The opening night of the 2019 Sidney Street Market featured more than 150 vendors lined along Beacon Avenue. (Black Press Media file photo)
Sidney Street Market plans for 2021 return at Mary Winspear Centre

Tentative plan calls for the event’s return to Beacon Avenue after COVID-19 pandemic

(Dave Landine/Facebook)
VIDEO: Dashcam captures head-on crash between snowplow and truck on northern B.C. highway

Driver posted to social media that he walked away largely unscathed

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Help make children’s wishes come true

Black Press Media, BraveFace host mask fundraiser for Make-A-Wish Foundation

A B.C. Ambulance Service paramedic wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 moves a stretcher outside an ambulance at Royal Columbia Hospital, in New Westminster, B.C., on Sunday, November 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Top doctor urges Canadians to limit gatherings as ‘deeply concerning’ outbreaks continue

Canada’s active cases currently stand at 63,835, compared to 53,907 a week prior

A Canadian Pacific freight train travels around Morant’s Curve near Lake Louise, Alta., on Monday, Dec. 1, 2014. A study looking at 646 wildlife deaths along the railway tracks in Banff and Yoho national parks in Alberta and British Columbia has found that train speed is one of the biggest factors. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Study finds train speed a top factor in wildlife deaths in Banff, Yoho national parks

Research concludes effective mitigation could address train speed and ability of wildlife to see trains

A airport worker is pictured at Vancouver International Airport in Richmond, B.C. Wednesday, March 18, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Canada extends COVID restrictions for non-U.S. travellers until Jan. 21 amid second wave

This ban is separate from the one restricting non-essential U.S. travel

Menno Place. (Google Street View image.)
B.C. care home looks to hire residents’ family members amid COVID-19-related staff shortage

Family would get paid as temporary workers, while having chance to see loved ones while wearing PPE

A man walks by a COVID-19 test pod at the Vancouver airport in this undated handout photo. A study has launched to investigate the safest and most efficient way to rapidly test for COVID-19 in people taking off from the Vancouver airport. The airport authority says the study that got underway Friday at WestJet’s domestic check-in area is the first of its kind in Canada. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, Vancouver Airport Authority *MANDATORY CREDIT*
COVID-19 rapid test study launches at Vancouver airport for departing passengers

Airport authority says that a positive rapid test result does not constitute a medical diagnosis for COVID-19

A small crash in the water south of Courtenay Saturday afternoon. Two men had to be rescued, but reports indicate there were no serious injuries. Photo by Mike Chouinard
Small plane crash in Comox Valley waters Saturday afternoon

Two rescued from plane that had flipped in water; no serious injuries reported

A photo from 2017, of Nuchatlaht First Nation members outside court after filing a land title case in B.C. ( Submitted photo/Nuchatlaht First Nation).
Vancouver Island First Nation calls on B.C. to honour UNDRIP in historic title case

Nuchatlaht First Nation says Crown counsel continues to stall the case using the ‘distasteful’ argument that the Nation ‘abandoned’ their land

Most Read