Also what effect does this have on pending court cases for either tickets or misdemeanor charges?So I wonder what this means exactly. Does the court's rejecting their motion for an injunction mean the PTC can no longer issue tickets to drivers? I would like to read the ruling. Anyone seen it or have a link to it?
It seems like that would pretty much nullify any citations issued as the judge said the PTC basically has no authority to issue them to Uber drivers.More info from: http://tbo.com/news/politics/judge-denies-motion-for-temporary-injunction-against-uber-20150807/
By Mike Salinero | Tribune Staff
Published: August 7, 2015 | Updated: August 7, 2015 at 03:33 PM
A Hillsborough County circuit judge Friday refused to order the ride-share company Uber from operating within the county's borders.
Circuit Judge Paul L. Huey denied the Hillsborough Public Transportation Commission's motion for a temporary injunction against Uber. Chief Assistant County Attorney Rob Brazel said Friday he was not sure if the county would continue to issue citations to Uber drivers in light of Huey's ruling.
"There's nothing in Judge Huey's order that prohibits them from operating," Brazel said, referring to Uber. "But the PTC still contends that they are operating in violation of the rules."
Brazel said the county attorneys will confer with their outside counsel at the Holland & Knight law firm before deciding what further action they will recommend to the transportation commission.
The PTC, a local government body created by the state Legislature, contends that Uber drivers fall under the county's taxicab regulations, requiring high-level background checks and commercial insurance. Since Uber launched service here in April 2014, PTC officers have ticketed drivers.
Uber contends that it should not fall under the PTC's rules because it is a communication that connects willing riders with drivers who use their personal vehicles for transporting paying passengers.
This year, the PTC sued Uber and Uber drivers seeking a declaration that the vehicle and drivers fall under the agency's rules and seeking a permanent injunction that would stop the company from operating. On May 20, the PTC sought a temporary injunction, and Huey held an evidentiary hearing July 17.
In his ruling, Huey rejected the county's assertion that vehicles operated by Uber drivers are the same as a taxicab because the smart-phone applications used contact diver and determine what fares to charge are the same thing as taxi meters.
Huey said that the PTC, in its regulations, "could have defined a public vehicle for hire as 'any motor vehicle for hire.'"
"Had it done so, clearly Uber drivers would be covered," Huey wrote. "However, it chose not to do so. Rather it defined six distinct classes of public vehicles. The only class truly relevant here is taxicab … It is not clear that an 'Uber driver' meets PTC's definition of 'taxicab.'"
Under the PTC's "unambiguous language," Huey wrote, an Uber driver does not satisfy the definition of a taxicab. He said nothing prevents the PTC from amending or modifying its language to clearly govern the transportation networking companies
The door is definitely open, he told them exactly what they need to do in order for him to approve the injunction next time. We'll see how quickly they can get things changed, I don't know the process for that but hopefully it takes a lot of time and some kind of approval by someone besides themselves.I was just about to come post the same article... sounds like the door is open for an end around but it may take some time and there should be public hearings.