Pennsylvania vote on Uber, Lyft law set for this week

Gov. signs rushed bill that really makes Uber, Lyft legal in Philly
Metro file photo

A drama that’s lasted two full years may finally be coming to an end.

Popular taxi apps Uber and Lyft, which have been operating in Philadelphia during that time without full legal authority to do so and some threats of enforcement from the Philadelphia Parking Authority (PPA), may soon be just as legal in Philly as a traditional taxi cab.

This week, legislation brokered to legalize these types of servicesin Philadelphia is expected to pass the state Houseand move toward becoming law.

House Republicans spokesman Steve Miskin told CBS the bill will come upfor a vote early this week, and is expected to pass.

The bill still needs to return to the state senate for one more vote before it can reach the governor’s desk. But the senate already voted earlier this year on similar legislation.

Uber got a two-year experimental license to operate in the state from the Pennsylvania Utility Commission in 2015. But Philadelphia County’s PPA never recognized that license.

The situation was made more complicated after the PPA brokered a 90-day truce that semi-legalized Uber (not Lyft), with the expectation this legislation would be passed in Harrisburg by Sept. 30.

The truce expired without a new law, leading to a panic two weeks ago after a Philly judge ordered Lyft and Uber cease operations—for about 24 hours, until her order was held on appeal.

In the meantime, while the legislative process continues, Uber and Lyftoperate unimpeded in Philly.