PROVINCE INTRODUCES LEGISLATION THAT WOULD MODERNIZE REGULATION OF MANITOBA'S VEHICLE-FOR-HIRE INDUSTRY
– – – Empowering City of Winnipeg Would Ensure Common Authorities, Responsibilities for All Manitoba Municipalities: Clarke
Legislation introduced today by the Manitoba government would modernize the vehicle-for-hire industry, transfer regulatory responsibility for the industry to individual municipalities and allow new transportation options for consumers to be explored, Indigenous and Municipal Relations Minister Eileen Clarke announced today, following the completion of an independent review of the taxicab industry.
“Manitoba’s legislation governing the vehicle-for-hire industry dates back to 1935 and does not work in a modern economy,” said Clarke. “An in-depth analysis of legislative and regulatory frameworks governing this industry compared Manitoba’s capital region with other jurisdictions in Canada and recognized the advantages of regulating the industry at a municipal level. The regulation of the city of Winnipeg’s industry solely by the provincial government is unique among jurisdictions across Canada and would be addressed by this legislation.”
MNP was engaged by the Taxicab Board to complete an independent review of the city of Winnipeg’s taxicab industry. The resulting report, completed in December 2016, notes co-ordination and co-operation with municipal police services, customer contact systems, parking and bylaw enforcement resources as some of the benefits of local municipal regulation.
The proposed local vehicles for hire act would devolve responsibility for oversight of the taxicab industry in the city of Winnipeg to the municipal government, bringing the city in line with other municipalities in the province, all of which already have the authority to regulate their vehicle-for-hire industries.
The minister noted that licenses issued to drivers and businesses by municipalities outside of Winnipeg would continue for those who provide vehicle-for-hire services. In the interests of certainty and seamless transition for existing taxicab businesses and drivers licence holders working within Winnipeg, licences would automatically transfer to the city of Winnipeg upon the act coming into force.
In order to make travel between municipalities simpler for both passengers and drivers, the proposed legislation would apply the bylaw of the municipality in which the vehicle-for-hire trip begins. For example, an entire trip beginning in the city of Winnipeg and ending in the city of Selkirk would operate under the Winnipeg bylaws.
“This legislation would allow municipalities to decide how best to enable a responsible, reliable and economical taxicab industry including provisions for ride-sharing,” said Clarke. “Our government looks forward to working collaboratively with the City of Winnipeg and the vehicle-for-hire industry to ensure a smooth transition.”
The minister added the proposed legislation would come in to force on Feb. 28, 2018, or earlier if the city is ready sooner, in order to allow the City of Winnipeg sufficient time to create relevant bylaws.