Rep. Monica Youngblood
Santa Fe – Republican Rep. Monica Youngblood and Democratic Sen. Phil Griego are introducing legislation to regulate ridesharing companies, such as Uber and Lyft, in New Mexico.
The ridesharing services, which were introduced in Albuquerque and Santa Fe over the past year, have expanded safe, reliable transportation options for New Mexicans. In addition, they provide valuable economic opportunities.
Sen. Phil Griego
“Ride-sharing services provide a safe ride home and good jobs,” Youngblood said. “Putting this law on the books will not only expand ridesharing services – it will give New Mexicans better transportation options and help reduce drunken driving.”
One study found that ride-sharing services are keeping the roads safer. The study, released by Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) in conjunction with Uber, showed that ridesharing is helping to significantly tackle drunken driving because people have another convenient and safe option to get a ride home. Since launching in California in 2012, ridesharing services are estimated to have helped prevent 1,800 crashes in the highest risk group for drunken driving.
Unfortunately, the patchwork of current regulations in New Mexico does not fit the innovative ridesharing or Transportation Network Companies (TNCs) model. TNCs are using technologies and creating opportunities that did not exist five years ago. That is why this legislation would streamline regulations in New Mexico and codify the highest safety standards for ridesharing services, while at the same time giving New Mexicans better transportation options.
Regulating these services will also provide safety to New Mexico’s consumers. The legislation will require ride-sharing services to provide insurance and conduct rigorous background checks, ensuring accountability.
“This new innovative model for providing transportation services needs to be welcomed and supported in New Mexico as we welcome other startup businesses,” Griego said. “These services need to have a fair regulatory environment that does not exist under current law. Ridesharing certainly fills a gap in New Mexico’s public transportation offerings and creates new job opportunities.”