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KC Council Prepares To Act On Kemper Arena, Ride Sharing Services

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Kemper Arena: losing $1.1 million per year, according to the convention department.

Two items that have been on the back burner for some time for the Kansas City City Council will move to the foreground next week. 

Ordinances were introduced Thursday addressing the future of Kemper Arena and regulation of ride-share services like Lyft and Uber. 

A committee will start refining an ordinance declaring Kemper Arena “surplus property” and starting a nationwide request for proposals on what to do with it. 

Committee chair Ed Ford said the next step may be up to the council elected this spring. Ford said he and others would like to resolve the Kemper issue before many of them must leave the council because of term limits, but getting the job done right takes precedence.

The ride sharing ordinance would waive the separate city vehicle inspection, but drivers would still have to pay  up to $250 for a for a permit to carry passengers. A ride share company could reduce the fee for its drivers by paying a $10,000 annual fee.

Driver background checks would be required, but would not have to be performed by the city.

The plan seems fairly well received by Lyft. Uber has called it unacceptable. 

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