Lyft back in Houston, Uber back in Galveston after Abbott signs HB 100

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Published 7:07 am, Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Ride-hailing company Lyft will return to Houston Wednesday afternoon, and Uber will be back in Galveston soon. 

This change came about after Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on Monday signed a law that bans the fingerprinting requirement for ride-sharing companies.

The signing of House Bill 100 means that cities can no longer dictate these types of companies, and can no longer require fingerprinting as a part of background checks, which will still be required on an annual basis. The bill also calls for drivers to submit electronic receipts to passengers, provide “all necessary information to the consumer before each ride” and enforces a “zero-tolerance intoxication standard for drivers.”

Popular ride-hailing service left Houston in late 2014 due to this city’s mandatory fingerprinting. At the time, a company spokeswoman said Lyft would not relaunch in Houston while that requirement was in place. Now, Lyft has confirmed that it will return as of 2 p.m. Wednesday and has already began recruiting drivers. 

(Story continues below.)

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Abbott’s signing of HB 100 also means Uber is back in Galveston, just in time for the island’s busy summer season. The company left Galveston in early 2016 after the city required drivers to obtain a chauffeur license. 

Uber and Lyft will also be returning to Austin as a result of HB 100.

“Texas has longtime been the home for innovation and economic growth, but a patchwork quilt of compliance complexities are forcing businesses out of the Lone Star State,” Gov. Abbott said in a prepared statement. “My goal as Governor is to remove the barriers of government to encourage competition, and empower consumers to choose. This bill increases economic liberty while still ensuring customer safety, and I thank Representative Chris Paddie for his work on this legislation.”

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