DALLAS -- Dallas city council passed an ordinance Wednesday that levels the playing field between taxis, limos and app-based companies like Uber and Lyft.
"This is what's expected. Drivers, small cab companies are happy," said Star Cab manager Girma Wolderufael. "This opened up the market to everybody so everybody can compete."
It brings the same regulation to ride-share companies like Uber, which has come under fire for its process in screening drivers. Especially after and Uber service driver allegedly raped a rider in India. He was serial sex offender out on bail.
"What happened in India is undoubtedly horrific, and that is just something again that we as a company and as a city will continue to work with them on to make sure that everybody's comfortable with our safety precautions. Because we are very confident with them," Uber General Manager Leandre Johns said.
They now will have to operate just like taxi companies, providing primary insurance and going through the same steps to receive a permit -- including a driver license, good driving record and no criminal convictions.
The ordinance which goes into effect in April.
"You know, we're excited because it doesn't hamper us too much in one way or the other," Johns said.
Taxi drivers say there is still one issue that has to be dealt with -- commercial insurance.
"The insurance part is really difficult for taxis. Policy limit for Dallas is $500,000. It's still too high," Wolderufael said. "That eats up most of the money the cab companies earn. That's their big cost."
It's actually five times higher than Houston, San Antonio and Austin. Yikes!