1. The official reason the city council gave yesterday for putting off Monday's full-council vote to regulate ridesharing companies and update the regs on taxis and for-hire cars is that council member Nick Licata will be out of town.
However, there may be another reason for rescheduling to vote until the following Monday, March 17.
Uber and Lyft had initially said the pending legislation—which puts a cap (150) on the number of rideshare cars per company that can be on the road at one time—would put them out of business.
But Fizz hears that the companies may now be willing to share (ha) their internal data on the number of cars that are actually on the road at one time (as opposed to the press release number they put out yesterday boasting about 900 "active drivers" overall)—that would enable the council to work with the companies and move forward on fine-tuning the legislation.
2. State senate Democrats were threatening to force a Democratic house bill to the floor yesterday after the Republican-dominated Majority Coalition Caucus kept it stuck in committee. The bill—a cousin to this year's landmark legislation making kids of undocumented immigrants eligible for college financial aid—would make vets who've been out of state (or vets on bases here, but who are from out of state) eligible ASAP as well.
The Republicans totally support the bill; their version, sponsored by state Sen. Barbara Bailey (R-10, Oak Harbor) is, similarly, currently stuck in a house committee.
The problem with this popular piece of legislation is that both sides want credit for it, and so neither side is willing to advance the other side's version. The house version was sponsored by Rep. Sherry Appleton (D-23, Poulsbo).
And frankly, Appleton is the only one who came out looking like an adult yesterday. She told the Everett Herald: "I’ve told the speaker [Rep. Frank Chopp] if my bill is dead, go ahead with the senate one. It will be so good for veterans.”
The Seattle Times also had the story yesterday.
3. If you missed Erica on KUOW this week—talking about the great advertising debate!—listen in here.
4. In other Erica news—or more importantly, NARAL Pro-Choice Washington news—ECB is on the panel of judges who will taste test treats from over 40 chocolatiers at the annual Chocolate for Choice fundraiser for reproductive rights, next Thursday evening at Safeco Field's Terrace Club.