Differing opinions on status of deal between PPA, Uber

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 Letter sent to members of IBEW Local 98

Letter sent to members of IBEW Local 98

Philadelphia taxi drivers and those with disabilities have teamed up against Uber, the ride-sharing service, claiming the company does not serve passengers with mobility troubles. 

Ronald Blount of the Taxi Drivers Alliance contended Uber was given preferential treatment by the Philadelphia Parking Authority and is discriminating against people with disabilities.

A  Philadelphia judge late Tuesday seemed to side with the coalition, saying she would order “a stay” on the agreement between the Philadelphia Parking Authority and Uber that allowed the ride-hailing service to operate temporarily in the city.

“Right now, the regulations are that UberX is illegal in Philadelphia, until the commonwealth of Pennsylvania changes that,” Judge Linda Carpenter said.

“Judge Carpenter’s order does not invalidate our agreement with the PPA in any way,” said Uber spokesman Craig Ewer. “We look forward to serving Philadelphia during the DNC and throughout the summer.”

Uber had struck a deal with Philadelphia to operate legally in the city during the Democratic National Convention this month and through the summer. The agreement was prompted by a major disruption in regional rail service when SEPTA took a third of its fleet out of service because of structural defects.

Another hearing is scheduled for July 22, just before the delegates come to town.

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