SA mayor to ask council to delay rideshare insurance requirements

SAN ANTONIO – San Antonio Mayor Ivy Taylor said she will ask the City Council to delay requiring gap insurance coverage for drivers working with transportation network companies like Lyft and Uber.

In a statement released Tuesday, Taylor said it isn't feasible for the city to implement the insurance standards set for in the TNC ordinance because that type of coverage isn't available in Texas.

She wants the requirement to be delayed until a conforming product is available, or the legislature creates a statewide standard.

In the meantime, taylor said the city is looking at several options to ease the burden of the existing ordinance, like random drug-testing, alternative fee and payment processes and have drivers do an in-person application with a 10-point fingerprint check.

Taylor said the public's safety remains the top priority.

Companies like Lyft and Uber have said they would be forced to leave San Antonio if the ordinance as it is written takes effect March 1.

Late Tuesday afternoon, Uber officials issued the following statement:

"We are pleased to hear the Mayor recognizes the current ridesharing ordinance is unworkable. In addition to the insurance provisions, we remain concerned with the duplicative driver requirements that do little more than add bureaucratic red tape for part time drivers trying to use their own resources to earn extra money on the Uber platform. We hope the rest of the council will take a comprehensive review of this ordinance and repeal these regulations."

In addition, Yellow Cab San Antonio President John Bouloubasis issued this statement:

"Every day that TNCs are allowed to operate without basic, necessary insurance coverage, San Antonio passengers, drivers and visitors are at risk," said Bouloubasis. "It's shocking to see our city government blink in the face of Uber's high pressure lobbying tactics, and delay implementation of a fair, public-safety focused ordinance that creates a level playing field for all vehicles for hire."

District 2 Councilman Alan Warrick also issued this statement Tuesday afternoon.