Uber just launched in Portland on Friday, but the City’s Transportation Bureau is already dropping the hammer.
The dispute? It’s one you’ve heard before. The city has laws for how for-hire vehicles must be licensed, and they want Uber to follow them. Until everyone is on the same page, Portland wants Uber to shut down operations within city limits.
The city has issued a cease and desist commanding Uber to halt operations, and is asking the court to step in and make it so.
If Uber continues to operate in the city, both the company and individual drivers face some pretty massive fines. Each time they’re busted, it’s a $1,500 ticket to the company and at least $2,250 in fines to the driver. Even if it’s just one dude’s job to write a ticket or two each day, that’s a million dollars in fines by this time next year.
Uber has a history of ignoring legal demands in the cities they operate in. Unlike most major cities where Uber has launch, Portland officials have made it quite clear that they’re willing to go fine drivers directly. Unless Uber is promising to foot the bill for those $2,000+ tickets when they arise, it might be tough to get drivers behind the wheel.