New bill could force ride-sharing companies out of Nevada


A new bill, heard in the budget committee Monday, could drive major ride-sharing companies like Uber and Lyft out of Nevada.

Senate bill 226 raises insurance coverage for drivers from $50,000 to $300,000 when using the app.

“We do millions of rides at the airport. Not thousands…Millions,” Uber/Lyft Driver Thomas Osbeck said.

Osbeck is retired and he drives Uber and Lyft in his spare time.

“It’s been a god sent for the whole community to have all these Uber and Lyft drivers in town,” Osbeck said.
Osbeck is one of many disappointed and angry with Senate Bill 226. The bill would increase insurance requirements and require drivers to get a business license.

In a statement to 8 News Now, Lyft spokesperson Chelsea Harrison said, “Singling out ride sharing with licensing requirements not placed on any other business in the state is a blatant attempt by the taxi industry to squash competition and innovation.”

Harrison says the amendment would make ride sharing in Nevada nearly impossible.

“Before you even get started, you’re in several hundreds of dollars in expenses,” Osbeck added. “It’s a terrible bill to increase the insurance when the insurance increase isn’t needed.”

A petition  calling for Governor Sandoval to turn the bill down says in part, “How much money has been poured into the Nevada economy because of drivers?”

“This is the first shot by the taxi companies to try to kill us again,” Osbeck said.

State regulators say it would cost about 3.5 million dollars to implement this bill.

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