A new bill is being proposed to cover Connecticut residents if they are in a crash while driving with an Uber employee.
There are about 200,000 Connecticut riders who use Uber every month.
Uber officials said safety is their top priority.
The president and owners of taxi cab companies made their voices heard at the Legislative Office Building in Hartford on Tuesday. They're not included in this bill, which has them calling for changes.
“First it didn't really bother me,” Mike Olschafsaie with ACE Taxi service said. “I mean, Uber, what are they doing to do to us? This isn't NYC.”
But now, Uber has grown tremendously and doubled their drivers in just one year in the United States. That is causing concern with local taxi companies because they have to regulate their businesses differently including higher insurance costs, driver background checks and regulated rates.
“Everything they are doing is hurting us,” Olschafsaie said. “We are held to the standard up here and Uber down here.”
A hearing was held inside the Legislative Office Building in Hartford about a bill that would require transportation network companies, which Uber falls under, to have higher insurance policies.
Uber is on board.
“Thirty other states have already taken a similar step,” Matt Powers with Uber said.
Currently, Uber drivers only need a personal insurance policy.
The cab companies said they shouldn't be held to tougher regulations since they're providing the same service.
“We are looking for a level playing field, that's all,” Olschafsaie said. “We are not getting that.”
Uber thinks this bill would be a positive step for their drivers and those, who use the service.
“Travelers are safer because of it,” Powers said.
The bill could get voted on as soon as Thursday.
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