Last Wednesday Colorado Senate Bill 11-065 passed unamended through the Senate Committee on Business, Labor and Technology on a 4-3 roll call vote with bipartisan support. The bill is now in the hands of the Committee on Appropriations.
SB 11-065 would reform the regulations in place that determine which companies are allowed to compete in Colorado’s market for taxicab services. The bill would allow any company that meets a series of basic requirements to operate, rather than the current law that requires proving to the Colorado Public Utilities Commission (PUC) that additional competitors would not be “detrimental to the public interest.”
Face The State reports that two representatives from Union Taxi testified in support of the bill. Union Taxi is an incumbent firm, and is the most recent firm to receive approval from PUC to compete. Abdi Buni, one of Union Taxi’s founders said in his testimony:
If Union, God forbid, should fail because of a new company so be it… (Union Taxi doesn’t) deserve to live if (it) can’t compete.”
I will continue to follow this bill through the Senate, so check back for updates in the coming weeks.
For more on recent taxicab regulatory reform efforts in Colorado and SB 11-065, see my recent Reason.org commentary here.