Kansas City, Lyft remain at odds, headed to federal court

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- There's still no formal agreement between Kansas City and a ride share company called "Lyft" as of Tuesday night. The city moved to get a restraining order against the company, to prevent it from offering unregulated rides for donations.

That's when it was revealed the Lyft and its attorney filed to have the issue taken up in federal court. The group says it's not subject to city regulations because it offers rides for donations, not fares. However, the city still considers what they're doing unlawful, and says it will continue to write citations if Lyft drivers keep taking money for rides.

So far 15 citations have been issued. Kansas City Transportation Group CEO Bill George controls most of the city's taxi cabs and ultimately thinks the city ordinance will prevail.

"I think regardless of the venue, the finding will be the facts that transportation for hire is governed by the city under chapter 76,” George said.

An attorney for Lyft said the company is doing what it needs to take the next step.

"It our right to do and we're trying to protect the Lyft community, so we took advantage of that and now the next step is federal court," said attorney Pat McInerney.

The city says it will embrace the company, so long as they go through the proper permitting and licensing. Another ride share group "Uber' launched last week, and is currently offering rides for free, which the city says does not put them in violation.

Uber does plan to start charging on May 23rd. Both the city and Uber say discussions are going well to make sure that Uber is in compliance when that happens.

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