Uber and Lyft can operate in Virginia

RICHMOND, Va. (WUSA9) -- Popular cab alternatives Uber and Lyft are allowed to operate in Virginia.

Governor Terry McAuliffe and Attorney General Mark R. Herring announced Wednesday that the commonwealth has reached a temporary agreement with the transportation companies that is legal under Virginia law.

The announcement comes two months after the Virginia DMV issued a "cease and desist" letter to the companies.

"This temporary legal framework, one of the first of its kind in the nation, is the result of extensive discussions between the companies, the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles, the McAuliffe administration, and Attorney General Herring's office following the issuance of "cease and desist" letters to the companies on June 5," officials said in a news release.

Uber and Lyft must conduct extensive background checks of drivers and their driving history and meet rigorous insurance requirements, among other regulations, or their operating authority will be revoked.

Governor McAullife said that Virginia needs to welcome innovative companies like Uber and Lyft in order to stay economically competitive.

"Thanks to the leadership of Governor McAuliffe and Attorney General Herring for putting consumers first and embracing innovation, choice and opportunity," said Justin Kintz, public policy, Uber Technologies, Inc. "We look forward to continuing to work together to create a permanent home for ridesharing, providing residents and visitors with safe, reliable transportation options."

D.C., Maryland and Virginia, in one way or another, have all had some issues with mobile app-based services that connect customers to independent cab drivers.

Also Wednesday, the Maryland Public Service Commission ruled that ride-sharing service like Uber and Lyft should be subject to the same state laws that other non-taxicab transportation for hire services are.

That means in Maryland, Uber must apply for a motor carrier permit for its UberBLACK or UberSUV services within
60 days. See the ruling here: http://on.wusa9.com/1vbCdzb


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