Uber’s new glowing logo sign. |GlowDigi/YouTube
Thursday, May 4, 2017 || By Michael Romain || @maywoodnews
Drivers who contract with transportation network companies like Uber and Lyft now face fines if they don’t display those companies’ distinctive emblems, or what’s known in the industry as trade dress, while driving customers through Maywood.
At a May 2 regular meeting, the Maywood Board of Trustees unanimously passed an ordinance requiring drivers to display the trade dress or face fines of at least $100 for the first offense, at least $300 for the second offense with a year and at least $500 for a third or subsequent offense within a year.
Numerous large cities across the country, including Chicago and New Orleans, have enacted comprehensive regulations on companies like Uber and Lyft. Maywood’s new ordinance, however, is much more limited in scope than those in larger cities.
The ordinance was introduced at the urging of Maywood Police Chief Valdimir Talley, who said that it would help his department fight narcotics trafficking.
“It’s not that the companies that engage in that behavior, but some individuals use the services [of Lyft and Uber] to engage [in drug trafficking],” Talley said during an April 26 Legal, License and Ordinance Committee meeting where the measure was discussed.
“The services are used to defeat the village’s ability to capture individuals trafficking narcotics and from seizing their properties as assets,” Talley said. “They’re not like taxi cabs or livery cabs, where we can ID them by license or registration.”
Talley said that “Lyft is kind of like Facebook” in that it is not often cooperative with law enforcement’s efforts to fight crime.
“When you try to get information from them by search warrant they don’t want to be very compliant or helpful to our efforts,” Talley said.
“This ordinance requires these different companies to make sure [drivers have] placards. Normally, that’s a regulation [enforced by] the companies, but a lot of these drivers fail to put their placards up.”
Maywood police beef up noise enforcement with purchase of new sound meters
At the request of Mayor Edwenna Perkins, Maywood Police Chief Valdimir Talley presented recent noise statistics to village board members at an April 26 LLOC meeting.
Weeks earlier, Perkins said that she had been getting complaints from some residents about noise levels and a lack of police enforcement of the village’s noise regulations.
Talley said that his staff responded to 80 service calls related to noise from January 1 to April 13.
“The incident listings will reflect we took action and we still plan to put [an officer] out to address noise offenses as we enter into the summer months,” Talley stated in an April 18 memo.
In order to enhance noise enforcement in the summer months, Talley said that he directed a police intern to research sound meters, with the department eventually purchasing two portable devices at around $600 each from a company called “Instrumart.”
Maywood passes ordinance requiring tobacco purchasers in village to be at least 21 years old
During a May 2 regular meeting, the Maywood Board of Trustees passed an ordinance that raises the minimum age required to buy tobacco products in the village from 18 to 21 years old.
The proposed ordinance was introduced at the urging of Maywood Police Chief Valdimir Talley, who said that the measure would help deter the sale of tobacco products to minors and young adults, “which often leads to loitering concerns around retail tobacco establishments,” according to a village memo.
“Proviso East stands next to two gas stations and we found that 18 year olds capture [tobacco] products from those gas stations, bring them into school and sell them,” Talley said.
The village has a partnership with the health advocacy organization Proviso Partners 4 Health, which is affiliated with Loyola University. Representatives with PP4H have been advocating for a new ordinance as a public health measure.
Talley said that if the measure passes, then retail establishments who sell tobacco products to minors would face a range of penalties, including the revocation and suspension of their business licenses, that are similar to those for illegally selling alcohol.
Other municipalities that have raised the minimum age of tobacco sales to 21 years old include Oak Park, Chicago and Evanston. VFP