Bill for statewide ride-sharing services moves forward

Bill for statewide ride-sharing services moves forward

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Alabama's move to become the 45th state to accept statewide ride-sharing laws took a step forward Thursday.

The bill passed through the committee and will now head to the full Senate.

Alabama is currently one of just six states without statewide ride-sharing laws.

Currently, companies like Uber may face different rules from each city it operates in. If the proposed legislation passes, the laws would be standardized statewide.

Sen. Rodger Smitherman D- Birmingham, voted to move the bill along in committee Thursday but expressed concern over potential safety issues.

Smitherman said he was afraid of people being taken advantage of by people impersonating ride-sharing drivers. In the newest version of the bill, it would be a criminal offense to impersonate an Uber driver. However the crime is only classified as a misdemeanor. Smitherman said he would like those penalties to be strengthened.

A similar bill failed to pass the legislature last year.

This year the bill has some bipartisan support along with the governor's endorsement.

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