Allow ride sharing companies in upstate New York
Never in my lifetime did I think I would open an app on my phone and, within minutes, have an on-demand car service pick me up and take me where I want to go. Unfortunately, while I can access this service when I am in places like Washington D.C., New York City and many other cities around the nation, I can’t when I am home in Western New York.
Due to excessive government regulations that protect certain special interests, Western New Yorkers are being denied what ride sharing companies offer, both in services and entrepreneurial opportunities.
Services like Lyft and Uber use a mobile phone application to connect people in need of a ride with local drivers through a simple and easy process. For folks who need a ride, companies like these provide an on-demand, convenient, and affordable service. For qualified drivers, ride sharing companies provide an opportunity to earn additional income on their own time using their own vehicle.
As ride sharing has rapidly expanded throughout the country, New York state and many of its municipalities have refused to allow these companies to provide their services to upstate residents. Instead, state and local governments have caved to special interests using the excuse that they need to figure out how to properly regulate these companies. Basically, government refuses to adapt to the changing marketplace in which these companies operate.
Instead of welcoming these innovations, New York and its municipalities want to limit their potential through expensive and unrealistic licensing requirements and burdensome regulations.
Not all of New York suffers from this lack of service. New York City has allowed the companies to operate on a limited basis, while upstate New Yorkers have been deprived of ride sharing services altogether.
Governmental indecision on how to deal with these companies is denying millions of New Yorkers the benefits of private sector innovation that most of the country now enjoys.
Our country is the land of opportunity because of the companies and individuals who rise above restrictive barriers to operate and grow their businesses. Our state and local leaders need to stop issuing restrictive regulations that strangle business innovation.
It is time to open the doors to innovation and allow Uber and Lyft to freely operate in our region.