According to a poll conducted by the Global Strategy Group, New Jersey residents have an overall favorable opinion of ridesharing apps like Uber but with one caveat: they think that rules should be standardized statewide.
The poll of 602 likely 2017 voters found that among those who were familiar with ridesharing apps (55 percent), 46 percent found Uber favorable. Eighty percent of respondents also said that they believe the ridesharing services have an overall positive impact on the statewide economy.
Over the past few years, ridesharing apps like Uber and Lyft have become an alternative to traditional taxi services or from individuals driving themselves. That uptick in the use of these services, however, has not been followed by any legislation in New Jersey standardizing and regulating the services statewide. According to 81 percent of the poll respondents, that regulation is a critical step forward. Such regulation could lead to the imposition of new rules like mandated background checks, insurance requirements and other safety precautions, ensuring heightened user safety.
The legislation, A3765, has made it through committee twice but now appears to be stalled and there is no certainty that it will make it back onto the agenda before the end of the year. That bill was sponsored by Assemblyman Joe Lagana (D-28) and would impose regulations on services like Uber. It has bipartisan support.
In towns like Jersey City and neighboring Hoboken, cabbies have recently made vocal calls against such ridesharing apps. Much of the criticism toward such apps results from the lack of regulations that competing taxi companies need to adhere to despite providing very similar services. If New Jersey residents were to get their wish as per the poll results, the state would join a growing number of places nationwide that are imposing regulations similar to those imposed on cab drivers.