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Politics

Council OKs New Taxi Rules, Money For Discovery Place Plan

taxis at charlotte douglas airport
WFAE
The new rules let taxis recover airport fees and allow for more advertising in and on taxis.

The Charlotte City Council on Monday unanimously approved new rules for taxi operators designed to level the playing field with ride-sharing services such as Uber and Lyft. The city's new Passenger Vehicle for Hire ordinance takes effect July 1.

The new ordinance allows cab drivers to charge passengers to recover any city fees for picking up and dropping off passengers at Charlotte-Douglas International Airport. Once the law takes effect, taxis also will be allowed to carry more advertising, including passenger infotainment systems and roof-mounted digital signs.

Criminal background checks will be revised for taxi drivers and company operators. State and national criminal background checks now will be required every three years. Taxi companies also will be allowed to provide their own training and drug screening.

The new rules had been studied and recommended by the council's Community Safety Committee.

DISCOVERY PLACE GETS MONEY FOR STUDY

Also at Monday's meeting, the council approved giving Discovery Place $950,000 for a new Facilities Master Plan. The vote was 10-1, with Ed Driggs the lone dissenting vote.

The study would examine potential expansions and improvements - such as a redesigned facade - as part of the city's North Tryon Vision Plan. Any recommendations would come back to the council for consideration.