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June 07, 2015

New rule essentially bans Uber in East Hampton

Car-sharing service facing city ordinance that makes operation 'impossible'

A new rule in East Hampton, New York has made the ride-sharing service Uber unable to operate in the town.

CNBC reports that a new ordinance requiring each individual driver to register a business license in his or her name and have a physical business presence in the town is an "impossible" requirement for the service.

In response, Uber has asked residents to contact town supervisor Larry Cantwell about the rule, prompting 100 phone calls and 600 emails to his office. A majority of those responses supported Uber, coming not only from East Hampton but also across the country.

The situation in East Hampton mirrors similar cases across the country of Uber running into local regulations that hamper their ability to operate.

In Philadelphia, the service's cheaper UberX option remains illegal. However, it continues to operate, and the company announced in April that it had reached one million trips locally.

Despite their claim of success, Uber has not been without bad press in the region. In March, there was an alleged rape of a woman at the hands of an UberX driver in Philly, and other driver was accused of touching himself inappropriately with a female customer in the backseat in Avalon this past week. 

In both cases, the driver was removed from the service by the company.