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Uber Is Now In North Louisiana

David Ramos, Getty Images
David Ramos, Getty Images

When you log onto Uber’s website there’s a whole page dedicated to Louisiana where the ride-sharing service extols its virtues and how it has brought peace, prosperity, and enlightenment to the people on the state’s Gulf Coast.  Uber currently operates in New Orleans, Baton Rouge, Lafayette, Jefferson Parish, St. Tammany Parish, and Hammond.

But it’s not all peaches and cream in the kingdom of Uber.  On this same web page, they bemoan the fact that rules differ from city to city and parish to parish which makes it difficult for drivers to know who they can and can’t pick up.  For example, the site says that “one minute you can be driving in Metairie, and the next you’re not allowed to pick someone up because you’re in New Orleans.”

This is interesting because that’s exactly what is happening in the Ark-La-Tex.  While Shreveport has passed an ordinance allowing the operation of transportation network companies (TNC) in the city, Bossier City has not.  That means that an Uber driver in Shreveport would not be permitted to transport a fare to Bossier City.  So far, the company says it has no immediate plans to begin operation in the SBC.

However, that could be about to change.  In conversations with 710 KEEL News two members of the Shreveport City Council confirmed that negotiations are ongoing with Uber.  Councilwoman Stephanie Lynch said that the ordinance passed by the City Council is faulty, but that it’s in the process of being fixed. Councilman Michael Corbin added that the City has removed a “hold harmless” clause from the ordinance to which Uber had objected in an effort to clear the way for Uber and other ride sharing companies to begin operating in Shreveport.

For its part, Uber makes an emotional plea on its website to those who would hear them in Louisiana, “We’re asking for a single set of statewide rules that keep people safe, rides affordable, and create more economic opportunities in Louisiana.”  

In the meantime, Uber will begin operation in the Louisiana city of Monroe today and will soon begin offering service in Texarkana.

 

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