UBER begins operating in Newark legally – and will pay $10M for airport access

Newark Penn Station 2015
Newark Penn Station Source: Wikipedia
Newark, NJ on 27 April 2016 – Mayor Ras J. Baraka, UBER NJ General Manager Ana Mahony and taxi owner/drivers revealed additional details of the preliminary Newark/UBER agreement which was announced last week and signed on Tuesday, 26 April. The enhanced plan assures rider safety, provides revenue to Newark and protects the taxi industry.

This is the first agreement UBER has made with any major city in New Jersey and consists of:

  • UBER drivers may not stand in areas set aside for taxi waiting and will wait at an off-airport dispatch location to receive calls through the UBER app.
  • UBER drivers are prohibited from staying at Newark terminals to receive dispatches.
  • The City of Newark can receive a $3 Million up-front payment as part of the previously announced $10 Million permit fee to be paid by UBER over 10 years specifically for operating at Newark Liberty International Airport.
  • Even if a state-wide law is passed regulating UBER, UBER will remain obligated to pay the $10 million.
  • Newark may audit UBER’s compliance with this agreement annually.
  • UBER will provide $1.5M of commercial liability insurance coverage for all drivers operating on the platform.
  • UBER will conduct background checks on all drivers through a nationally-accredited, third-party provider. These checks will examine county, state and federal records, as well as motor vehicle records, sex offender registries and terror watch lists.
  • UBER will enforce a zero tolerance policy for drug and alcohol use by drivers using the UBER app.

Mayor Baraka said, “My goals have been to protect the safety of UBER riders, to require UBER to pay its fair share including fees and permits under the same kind of regulations as other businesses in Newark, and to create a level playing field for UBER and the Taxi and Limousine Industry. The agreement is fair to all and allows UBER to become a good corporate citizen of Newark. This agreement is good for economic development and job growth in Newark. UBER is an important addition to our city’s rapidly expanding technology sector.”

Ana Mahony, UBER New Jersey’s General Manager issued this statement:

UBER is proud to be the first ridesharing company to reach a compromise with the City of Newark that allows our driver-partners and riders to continue to use our app. The agreement framework released by Mayor Baraka is a model for the state legislature as it considers statewide ridesharing legislation. We thank Mayor Baraka for his leadership in making Newark the first city in New Jersey to embrace comprehensive and fair ridesharing regulations that encourage tech innovation and economic opportunity.

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