LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — City Council members vote on Wednesday to temporarily halt a motion that would allow ride-hailing companies to legally pickup passengers at Los Angeles International Airport.
In June, the Airport Commission approved a non-exclusive agreement, which was backed by Mayor Eric Garcetti, to allow ride-hailing companies such as Uber and Lyft to apply for permits to make pickups alongside taxis, shuttle vans and other vehicles at the airport.
Currently, ride-hailing companies are allowed to drop off passengers at LAX, but only companies that have obtained permits are allowed to legally pickup passengers.
Regulation states drivers of these companies, which are also referred to as transportation network companies (TNCs), need to have an active permit from the California Public Utilities Commission and sufficient insurance coverage in order to obtain a permit.
Drivers would also need to pay a $4-per-trip fee in a addition to a monthly licensing fee.
However, a motion was created by Councilman Paul Krekorian to investigate passenger safety and disability access along with other issues.
“Given the security and safety concerns unique to the airport and the surrounding area, it is in our view that TNCs currently lack the necessary regulatory framework to do business at LAX,” Krekorian wrote in a letter to the board in May. “We would therefore oppose any potential agreement between the Los Angeles World Airports and TNCs that does not incorporate a regulatory framework substantially similar to the one imposed on taxi companies.”
In a statement, a Lyft spokesman said: “Consumers, airport staff, and Mayor Garcetti have all made it clear that it’s time for ridesharing to come to LAX. We urge the Council to move quickly and make options like Lyft available for Los Angeles travelers.”
Meanwhile, Uber expressed hopeful intentions that ride-sharing programs will be available by the end of summer.
“Riders and driver-partners across Los Angeles have voiced their strong support for more safe, affordable transportation options like uberX at LAX,” added Uber Spokesperson Michael Amodeo. “We look forward to working with airport officials and city leaders to bring ridesharing to LAX by summer’s end.”
The bill will now be passed to the Transportation, Commerce and Technology Committee for review.
Council members will have 20 calendar days to make recommendations and indicate whether they accept or reject the agreement.
If the ordinance is approved, LAX would become the largest airport in the country to permit ride-hailing operations.