Lawmakers debate letting Block Island set its own Uber, Lyft rules

Sky Drone 12: In-Flight View of Water Street on Block Island

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Rhode Island lawmakers are considering a bill that would let a picturesque summer resort island set its own rules for regulating ride-hailing companies such as Uber and Lyft.

The state Senate is scheduled to vote on the legislation Tuesday.

Taxi proprietors who live on Block Island support the proposal. It would allow the town of New Shoreham, which encompasses the island, to be exempt from new statewide rules affecting ride-hailing apps.

Taxi drivers say they’d be harmed if Uber and Lyft don’t have to follow the island’s long-standing taxi code.

Lyft says the legislation is searching for a non-existent problem.

The bill was introduced by Sen. Susan Sosnowski, a South Kingstown Democrat whose district includes Block Island. Block Island Republican Rep. Blake Filippi has introduced companion legislation in the House.

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.