Mississauga is the latest Ontario municipality to tackle Uber and will attempt to accommodate the company and please local cabbies. The city is going to reach a decision on May 4 and decide whether to adopt an Uber-friendly bylaw or reject it and effectively make the company leave Mississauga.
Both taxi services and Uber have been making last ditch attempts to make the city see their point of view. For cabbies this means convincing authorities that proposed regulations are not harsh enough on the ride-sharing service and that it should be banned entirely. For Uber it is about making the municipality see that regulations should be limited and the company should be view differently, otherwise it will leave.
Balwinder Dhillion, a 30 year taxi veteran and president of Airport Taxicab Association said that city passing new legislation would be akin to cowardice.
“If they’re weak or cowards, they can’t. But if they really have pain about their own people who elect them … it’s up to the city councilors and how much dignity they have. If they really love (residents), they should ban Uber forever.”
Uber has said that it hopes Mississauga adopts regulations the company can work with, but if it announces Calgary-style laws then Uber would be forced to leave. Chris Schafer, Uber Canada’s public policy manager, said the company wants to work with the city to reach a workable solution.
“One too many seemingly innocuous burdens of red tape that don’t seem to serve to advance the core pillar of public safety will end ride-sharing in the City of Mississauga,” Schafer said. “If your intention is not to ban ride-sharing and to create a dynamic competitive marketplace with taxis, you cannot support the proposed recommendations as crafted currently. It’s black and white.”