Bad news for those of you who live in the DC area. The commissioner of the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles, Richard Holcomb, has sent cease and desist letters to Uber and Lyft.
“I am once again making clear that Uber must cease and desist operating in Virginia until it obtains proper authority,” Holcomb said in the letter.
This comes only months after the two services were hit with more than $35,000 in penalties for violating Virginia law and failing to receive the proper permits.
Lyft’s spokeswoman, Chelsea Wilson, says that Lyft will “continue normal operations.”
“Virginia residents have enthusiastically embraced Lyft as an affordable and reliable transportation alternative that increases safety by going above and beyond what is required by existing transportation services. As many of the current regulations surrounding taxis and limos were created before anything like Lyft’s peer-to-peer model was ever imagined, we’re committed to continuing to work with state officials to craft new rules for this new industry. We truly believe that if we approach situations like this positively and collaboratively, we can work together with local leaders to greatly improve transportation access, safety and affordability.”
It doesn’t seem like Uber plans on backing down, either. After receiving a pretty big investment, which was somewhere in the neighborhood of $1.2 billion, things like “regulations” and “penalties” aren’t really going to get in the way of Uber’s success.
If anything, Uber and Lyft are going to do the same thing they’re doing in Austin, Texas, right now. They’ll keep operating, continue giving a big middle finger to regulations and state and local governments, take the fines as they come, and keep bringing in profits.
Keep on keeping on, Uber and Lyft. Don’t let the man hold you down. We shall overcome.
[via Washington Post]