Lacey City Council on Thursday unanimously approved an ordinance that regulates Uber and other ride-hailing services in the city.
The ordinance already is in place in Yelm, Olympia and Tumwater.
The four cities took a uniform approach to regulating taxicab companies and drivers, and they decided to do the same with the ride-sharing businesses. Taxi services, however, will not be subject to the ride-sharing rules, but will still be regulated under an occupational permit process.
Some aspects of the ride-sharing ordinance:
▪ The ride-sharing companies will have to get a business license in each jurisdiction, as well as pay an annual licensing fee of $1,000. It is set that high to cover the cost of twice-annual audits of Uber drivers.
▪ Uber drivers also will have to get a business license in each jurisdiction if they have rides that originate in those cities. For example, an Uber driver from Tacoma who drops off a customer in Olympia would not have to get an Olympia business license. But that driver would have to get a license if they picked up a customer in Olympia.
▪ Uber drivers will not be allowed to accept street hails, unlike taxicabs.
Mayor Andy Ryder said Uber will add a lot to the community. He hopes local bars will remind patrons about the option to use the service.
Councilman Jason Hearn suggested the city take on a civic campaign to call attention to that option.