What to expect when Uber, Lyft come to Buffalo

Posted at 5:31 PM, Jun 06, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-06 17:31:43-04

It's official, ridesharing will be operational in Western New York beginning June 29. Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the legislation Monday night.

According to Governor Cuomo's office, required regulations have now been issued by several state agencies to allow ridesharing services to operate.

The regulations for passengers include:

  • Require that the fare or estimated fare be provided on the ride sharing app to the customer before the ride begins. The app must display: A photo of the driver; Make, model and color of the vehicle; and The vehicle’s license plate number.
  • Ridesharing vehicles must also display a prominent emblem on the passenger side of the vehicle's front windshield to verify to passengers the company they work for.
  • DMV is required to establish complaint procedures for license violations of ridesharing companies. Additionally, ridesharing companies must establish a process for consumer complaints.

Regulations for ridesharing companies include:

  • An application must be completed and submitted to DMV and companies must have an app to connect with riders. There is a $100,000 application fee, $90,000 of which is refunded if the company is not approved. There is also an annual renewal fee of $60,000.
  • Ridesharing companies will have to provide vehicle liability insurance for $1.25 million whenever a passenger is being driven and companies must provide workers compensation coverage for their drivers.
  • Companies are also required to adopt anti-discrimination policies for all passengers, including those with disabilities. The New York State Transportation Network Company Accessibility Task Force will analyze and advise companies on how to maximize effective and integrated services for persons with disabilities.

Regulations for ridesharing drivers include:

  • Drivers must pass a criminal background check before they can transport passengers, which includes a review of their driving record. Rideshare companies must enroll drivers in DMV’s License Event Notification System, which tracks and reports traffic ticket convictions, suspensions, revocations, reinstatements and other events.
  • Anyone wishing to become employed in this industry must contact the ride sharing companies. Drivers must have a valid license issued by DMV and be at least 19 years old. DMV does not have specific vehicle requirements, but the ride sharing companies may set standards.