Eugene seeks public comment on new rideshare policies

City staff have updated administrative rules and would like to hear from the community about the changes.

Posted: Jun 15, 2018 4:28 PM

EUGENE, Ore. -- The City of Eugene wants to make it more appealing for rideshare companies to do business in the area, and they’re asking for the public’s feedback on their updated public passenger vehicle codes.

With these updated administrative rules, rideshare companies should be operating in Eugene by early summer, if they choose to apply for a license in the area. Some students said this is an exciting move for Eugene. They said it will be more convenient for people and improve safety.

“To reduce the amount of people that walk around campus at night late while drinking, there's been a lot of crime and different assaults, so I think that will be really helpful,” said Maureen Cassani, a student at the University of Oregon. “And obviously it's important to reduce drunk driving, so that will be good.”

City staff approved changes to the public passenger vehicle code in April. The administrative process should make it official. They said Eugene has some pretty strict codes around safety, so altering them took some time.

“We do have some pretty strong community safety standards that we've maintained,” said Lindsay Selser, a communications analyst with the city. “So that would be the biggest difference is that we're maintaining more of those safety pieces like the local background check."

As Selser mentioned, the biggest thing that might seem different than other communities who use rideshare companies is Eugene's ability to do local background checks. They'll be allowed to check every driver that works for a rideshare service in the area and make sure those drivers maintain proper certification.

Some residents said they didn’t mind that stipulation, and that it actually made them feel safer.

“I think going through more precautions and more steps to ensure civilian safety is a good way to go. I don't think you could really argue with that,” Cassani said.

The city is seeking public comment on these changes before they make it official. They say they want all residents to feel safe and heard, so if a concern comes up consistently within these comments, they'll make sure it's addressed.

They’ll be taking public comment until June 29. You can learn more about the changes here, and can send them an email at ppv@ci.eugene.or.us with your comments.

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