Moosomin clears way for rideshare services

November 25, 2019, 7:27 am
Kevin Weedmark


Moosomin town council has adopted a bylaw that will allow rideshare services to operate in the community.

Provincial regulations allow rideshare services where there is municipal approval and a municipal bylaw in place.

Rideshare services offer on-demand passenger transportation booking services through an app on your smartphone.

Regulations allowing ridesharing in Saskatchewan took effect Dec. 14, 2018. That means rideshare companies and drivers can start operating in the province, provided they have municipal authorization and meet provincial and municipal requirements.

Moosomin town council passed a bylaw allowing rideshare companies at the November 13 council meeting. The issue was raised after a local taxi service closed.

In September, Councillor Murray Gray brought up the need for rideshare services at town council.

While some cities in Saskatchewan have ridesharing bylaws in place, Moosomin appears to be the first town in Saskatchewan with a rideshare bylaw.

Under Moosomin’s bylaw, individual drivers signed up with a rideshare app would apply for a licence through the town.

Individuals need to demonstrate to the town that they are part of a rideshare service, and must meet provincial requirements and have a sticker on their vehicle proving they have met those requirements.

Operators won’t be allowed to charge anything directly, to passengers, it will have to be charged through the app.

Councillor Murray Gray said he is hopeful that a rideshare app company will be interested in providing service in Moosomin.

“Because of the drinking and driving laws, I think it’s important for people to have an option,” Gray said.

“In a community our size, a taxi service is going to find it hard to make a go of it, but with ride sharing services, because you’re using your own car, there might be a few drivers who would use it as a part-time job and would be able to help get our people home safe in the evenings. Better to have that than to have them in the police report.

“Now that the bylaw has been passed, we want to find an app that will serve our community. Uber and Lyft don’t go to communities our size yet, but there are companies that will. So we will see if we can get a company interested, and line up some drivers. I think its a good service to have in our community.”