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January 5, 2015

State eyes regulations for Uber

A state department has submitted legislation that would call for regulation of Uber and other ride-sharing companies, the former of which already operates in Portland.

The Portland Press Herald reported that the bill aims to create a regulatory framework for companies like Uber that are currently not subject to local and state rules and compete with the heavily regulated taxi industry.

The bill — submitted by Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap and which is expected to be sponsored by state Sen. Ronald Collins, R-Wells — would require ride-sharing companies to share driver lists with the state, ensuring that they are properly licensed and have liability insurance.

Dunlap told the newspaper the bill is “nothing really earth-shattering.” He added, “It’s basically to make sure that they [ride-share companies] do what everyone else … who does for-hire transportation of passengers has to do.”

Uber spokeswoman Kaitlin Durkosh told the Press Herald “it’s encouraging that state officials are exploring a permanent home for Uber in Maine.” She said Uber is “eager to work together on a modern regulatory framework that makes sense for ridesharing, and embraces the choice and opportunity it offers.”

The bill’s submission comes weeks after the city of Portland announced it plans to draft local regulations for ride-sharing companies like Uber, which has drawn complaints from taxi drivers because of how it doesn’t have to abide by city’s taxi regulations.

Read more

Portland delays action on Uber regulations

Uber eyes coastal Maine expansion

Lawmakers OK new rules for Uber, similar services

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