Seattle City Council Extends Deadline To Finish Ride-App Driver Unionization Rules | KNKX

Seattle City Council Extends Deadline To Finish Ride-App Driver Unionization Rules

Sep 13, 2016

The Seattle City Council has extended the deadline for the city to figure out out how to implement a law allowing drivers for companies like Uber and Lyft to unionize.

The City Council approved the ordinance last year and tasked the city Department of Finance and Administrative Services with determining the rules for how drivers and unions could work together.

Those rules were supposed to be done by next week, but department officials asked the City Council for more time this summer. 

The Department of Finance is having trouble figuring out who exactly should be a "qualifying driver" -- the drivers who will get to have a say in whether to join a union. 

The problem is whether all drivers should vote regardless of how many trips they make or if the rules should distinguish between those who drive part time and and those who drive full time.

Now the Department of Finance has until Jan. 17 to hammer out those details. Department officials have said it will use the time for surveys and outreach.

In August, a U.S. District Court judge threw out a suit against the city filed by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. The chamber said Seattle is violating antitrust laws by allowing the drivers, who have been considered independent contractors, to unionize. The judge said the lawsuit was premature.