For the second time this month, taxicabs descended on downtown Washington, DC, on Tuesday to protest the DC Council’s decision to pass the Transportation Network Services Innovation Act of 2014 — a bill that finally put the question of rideshare legality in the District of Columbia to rest. But do taxi drivers understand who their enemy really is?
The bill, introduced by Council Members Mary Chen and David Grosso, will essentially require that rideshare companies insure their drivers for up to US$1 million, conduct background checks on new drivers, and furnish affiliated vehicles with distinguishing markers. As far as safety regulations go, these aren’t too bad and would probably be practiced even if the bill hadn’t passed. Providing safety helps appeal to costumers and is a competitive tactic in a free market.