Last night, Long Beach became the first big city in the United States to modernize taxi cab regulations in response to the success of new ride share services like Uber and Lyft. In the next few months, taxi customers will see new yellow cabs, lower fares, and a new smartphone app.
Ride-sharing companies like Uber and Lyft have ushered in the new 'sharing economy' by providing a new service and more options to consumers. Taxi cab regulations that were created long before the sharing economy existed have made it impossible for traditional cabs to respond and continue to compete.
Yellow Cab has long been an important member of our community, providing a vital service to residents and visitors, especially seniors and the disabled. They should have the ability to compete fairly with the new ride-sharing companies. These new, more flexible regulations will allow more cabs to operate, reduce fares for many riders, and improve the level of service that cabs provide our community. Uber, Lyft and Sidecar will still be able to operate under their business model, and Yellow Cab will be able to continue to thrive as well. It’s a win-win for consumers and for transportation providers.
I want to particularly recognize Councilwoman Stacy Mungo, Chair of the Economic Development and Finance Committee, for her leadership on this issue. This is just one more way we are innovating to improve amenities and the quality of life in our city.