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New South Florida Car Service May Face Road Blocks

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) — There is a new car service in town which allows you to get a car using an app but their lack of proper permits in South Florida may be a road block for the company.

The car service called Uber is in 36 countries, 125 cities which now includes Miami.

Those who have the app can find a car ready and willing to drive them around but the company is facing a bit of a challenge.

Despite requests by the car service to the county commission, Uber was shot down for proper permitting.

This makes them the second company of its kind to likely face plenty of fines.

CBS4’s Cynthia Demos asked Uber’s Director of Communications Lane Kasselman  if they are prepared to face fine.

WATCH Cynthia Demos’s report. 

“We stand behind our drivers 100 percent so we will pay a fine but we think that in the future there will be a permanent regulatory home,” said Kasselman.

Just two weeks ago Uber’s competitor, Lyft, started a similar car service they have been fined $22, 000.

CBS4’s Cynthia Demos caught up with County Mayor Carlos Gimenez, and asked him what he thought about companies like Uber coming to South Florida.

“We have a code and were going to enforce the code,” said Mayor Gimenez.

He thinks the code is antiquated and he wants to see the commission change it so the companies, that are 27 percent cheaper than cabs, can be in South Florida legally.

Lyft sent a statement regarding the fines, saying “We’re committed to working with local leaders to craft new rules for this new industry….We can work with local officials to greatly improve transportation access, safety and affordability.” 

Cab drivers in South Florida have mixed feelings on the issue.

“Going to see how the competition plays out,” said cab driver Rudy Nievo.

“I think it’s going to be bad for us, not any good,” said cab driver Maria Nieto.

Some are hoping the competition will help drive down the prices of the cab drivers medallions which is the permitting they need to drive the car.

At $70.00 a day for the medallion most cab drivers say they break even every day and only make money during the “season.”

Despite possibly facing fines, Uber said they are helping bring Miami’s travel options into the 21st century.The company also said they are offering free rides for the next two weeks.
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