Ride-share service applications now available through city
Carbondale-area residents interested in driving for a ride-share service can now apply to do so through the city.
The city announced Monday that aspiring Uber and Lyft drivers can pick up applications in the City Clerk’s Office or find them online at www.explorecarbondale.com.
Applicants are required to pay a $45 fee for a criminal background check and provide proof of insurance and a driver’s license. A vehicle safety inspection form signed by a city-certified ASE-approved mechanic must also be submitted. A registry of approved mechanics is available at the clerk’s office, the city said in a news release.
Drivers who meet those criteria will receive a transportation network license and a vehicle sticker from the city.
Uber and Lyft have been operating in Carbondale in some capacity for at least two weeks.
Ride-share service Lyft said in late February that it would offer its services in Carbondale. Uber, the company’s largest competitor, followed suit about a week later with a similar announcement.
While vehicles have been seen in Carbondale in recent weeks, city officials have said drivers using the transportation networks without city approval are doing so illegally.
Lyft and Uber will be legally available to SIU students and community members April 1, Amy Fox, Carbondale’s public relations officer, has said.
However, Scott Coriell, a communications manager at Lyft, has said the transportation network is operating under statewide regulations until Carbondale’s regulations take effect April 1. Uber could not be reached for comment.
Uber and Lyft announced their expansions into one of the largest cities in southern Illinois after Carbondale’s city council lifted municipal restrictions and added new designations to operate individual fare-based vehicles Feb. 14. This paved the way for transportation network companies to open in the city.
The law previously required taxicabs to apply for special company licenses that vetted companies for auto insurance and scheduled regular mechanical inspections with a city-owned garage. The changes favor companies that rely on ride-share applications and hire individual drivers to find passengers.
The Daily Egyptian’s news desk can be reached at [email protected] or 618-536-3326.