A Minneapolis City Council panel on Tuesday approved changes to regulations governing ride-share services like UberX and Lyft.
New language would add city oversight to the fast-growing but largely unregulated ride-sharing industry. The panel also voted to ease city rules on taxis.
The proposed changes will go to the full Minneapolis City Council for a possible vote next week.
Council member Abdi Warsame said the city will watch for problems.
"We will tweak it here and there, but at least now we have a regulated service coming into the city of Minneapolis," Warsame said, adding that approval of the changes by the full city council would create a "level playing field" for taxi companies.
The ordinance amendments would let taxi companies use older cabs, allow cab drivers to park at city meters and reduce annual vehicle inspections from two to one.
The ride-share services, also, known as transportation network companies, would pay an annual license fee of $35,000 as well as a $10,000 wheelchair surcharge.
That money would help the city offer incentives and waivers to cab companies with wheelchair accessible vehicles. Taxi operators would have to pay $20 per vehicle as a wheelchair surcharge.
While cab companies and drivers said they were happy with the changes, they argued that the ordinances essentially give separate sets of rules to companies working in the same industry.
"All the items we're heavily regulated on still exist," said Steve Pint, president and CEO of Taxi Services Inc. "There's been some concessions to those regulations, but nominal."