Gov. Butch Otter has allowed the Uber bill, HB 262, to become law without his signature, overriding all local regulations of ride-sharing services like Uber, which the bill dubs “transportation network companies.” The city of Boise and Uber had been at odds over Boise’s proposed regulations of the service; a lobbyist for Uber proposed the bill, which was opposed by Boise, Coeur d’Alene and the Association of Idaho Cities. It imposes state requirements that pre-empt local laws, essentially allowing companies like Uber to regulate themselves.
Otter lauded Uber for “operating in the best traditions of the free market,” but said he’s also concerned about “essentially trumping local restrictions, safeguards and … ground rules for doing business in each of our communities.” In his transmittal letter to lawmakers, he wrote, “The House and Senate votes show that relatively few members of the Legislature share those concerns enough to reject the company’s legislation, which indeed has been adopted by other states as well. But other states are not Idaho, and I encourage us all to watch carefully to ensure we remember that here, government closest to the people governs best.” You can read Otter’s full letter here.