British city of Sheffield gives Uber a welcome boost

British city of Sheffield gives Uber a welcome boost

Labour's Danny Myers believes the company fails the "fit and proper" test to be awarded a renewed licence, and was one of the speakers urging the cross-party licensing committee to reject Uber's application.

Uber's 12 month licence is set to expire on New Year's Eve, and Uber says it will be reviewing the decision once it receives formal notification from the council.

Unlike London, which deemed Uber wasn't "fit and proper" to operate within the city, York council's licensing team found that "there is no evidence before your officers that indicates the applicant is not fit and proper to hold an operator's licence in York".

"Passengers tell us they love being able to track their vehicle on a live map, pay without cash and get a receipt with their fare and the route taken".

This decision will probably be appealed, but for now York is a beacon council in that we're the first to flat out deny a renewal. Uber will be able to appeal against the decision at Magistrates' Court.

In total, York council received 296 complaints relating to private hire and hackney carriage drivers.

The report said the decision was taken after councillors heard from nine objectors to the company and decided not to give the ride-hailing company licence to ply on the streets of the city.

Uber car. Uber is expected to begin its appeal against Transport for London's decision to deny it a new operating licence in the capital

Coun Dave Taylor, a member of the committee, said during the meeting: "This city needs to have control of its taxi services and it needs to have a level playing field and I don't know if that means then national legislation aught to be tidied up".

"I think we expect a high standard from all taxi drivers and it's hard if these standards can be undermined and under cut by out of town drivers", Taylor added.

Neil McGonigle, Uber's head of cities in the North, spoke in support of the application.

Uber is appealing against September's decision by regulator Transport for London to strip it of its licence in its most important European market.

Earlier this month, local officials in Sheffield said Uber's license had been suspended after it failed to respond to queries. Saf Din, chairman of the York Hackney Carriage Drivers Association, told attendees that Uber was "systematically abusing" local laws and attempting to utilise loopholes by allowing drivers registered in other cities to operate within York.

In a statement, Uber described the decision, which it will review in due course, as "disappointing" for its riders.

Speaking during the debate tonight, Coun Suzie Mercer said: "I was still undecided having read the papers and I'm still undecided".

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