New York City

TLC passes new ride-hail rules

The Commission's new regulations include extending the cap on new for-hire vehicle licenses and putting a cap on how long drivers can cruise without passengers.

Taxis driving throughout the city.

Taxis driving throughout the city. lazyllama/Shutterstock

As expected, the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission passed a new set of ride-hail regulations on Wednesday, extending the cap on issuing new for-hire vehicle licenses and putting a cap on how long drivers can cruise without passengers below 96th Street in Manhattan. The 12-month extension on the vehicle cap and the cruising cap culminate a year of toughening regulations on the ride-hail industry at the same time that New York has seen the precipitous rise of companies like Uber and Lyft.

The TLC’s move follows weeks of one op-ed after another arguing for and against the cap – labor groups presenting its pros, and tech companies and those who represent them presenting its cons. 

Eric Goldwyn, a research scholar in the NYU Urban Expansion program at the Marron Institute, told City & State last week that the TLC seems to at least be moving in the right direction with its regulations, specifically by setting concrete goals to reduce congestion, as it has with the cap on cruising time. Still, with Mayor Bill de Blasio struggling to line up a successor to Meera Joshi, the former TLC commissioner who resigned earlier this year, he warned against charting a new regulatory course without leadership to oversee it. “I think getting a new TLC (commissioner) is maybe a more important issue to suss out, because I assume that person will have a strong hand in guiding what happens,” Goldwyn said.

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