Bylaw officers in the Waterloo Region said they will lay charges against Uber drivers if they are caught. Regional Councillor Jane Mitchell, the chair of the licensing and retail committee, said:
“They come under that bylaw because it’s driven cars for hire. They’re taking people places just like taxis do.
Under our present bylaw it is not legal to run a taxicab or limousine or car for hire that you are driving yourself. That’s illegal. You have to have a licence, and you have to have various things like certain amounts of insurance, and the Region, we have to do various health and safety checks, and check the meter and so on.”
Fines range from $165 (up to $250) for attempting to provide taxi services without a taxi driver’s license. Taxi bylaws will be enforced on a complaint basis until new regulations for services like Uber are in place. A first draft of the new regulation will be reported to council on August 11, with plans to implement the new bylaws by the beginning of 2016.
Uber launched in the Waterloo Region on Thursday, to the surprise of Regional councillors. In a statement, Mitchell said:
“We were disappointed. They’re a big company. They’ve been meeting with various councillors and they said they would work with us and then they just went ahead and started.”
Earlier this month, an Ontario court ruled in favour of Uber’s ridesharing service in Toronto. The court dismissed the city’s case to shut down Uber. The decision means that you can continue to use Uber’s safe, reliable, and affordable rides throughout Toronto. Uber says they are excited to continue working with Mayor John Tory and Toronto City Council.