Ride-hailing programs approved in Rapid City

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After a unanimous vote from the Rapid City Common Council on Monday, ride-hailing programs received the green light.

“I’d like to welcome Rapid City to the 21st century,” said Alderman Chad Lewis as he voiced his support for the services Lyft and Uber that operate via mobile apps..

The programs in which drivers use their personal cars as taxis, received a South Dakota sales tax license in October. Since then, Rapid City residents and officials have pushed to approve the companies which some say will drastically decrease the DUI rate.

Council members also said the services would help create jobs in Rapid City, and would help tourists and travelers get around town as well.

As part of the approval from the city council, the ride-hailing company must also pay a $1,500 licensing fee. Background checks for drivers and their vehicles will be conducted by the company in question.

Officials say users will be able to start driving and riding with the services by Christmas.

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