SARASOTA, Fla.- Bradley Hagerman is an Uber driver with more than a year of experience and has watched cities across the state debate how exactly to regulate ridesharing apps like Uber and Lyft. Some cities have voted to deregulate the industry, but others imposed strict regulations, some even banning the services all together.
"They could be way too stringent and basically force Uber or whatever ridesharing company out of the market," said Hagerman.
Hagerman says unique rules and regulations in each city make it complicated and confusing for both drivers and customers.
"Having a statewide law would be a lot better for everyone," said Hagerman.
That's why the state legislature began considering a bill that would put the power to regulate ridesharing apps in the hands of the state rather than local governments.
After years of debate, the Florida Senate passed the bill in a nearly unanimous vote Wednesday. The House already passed the same bill, and it now lies in the hands of Governor Rick Scott.
It's a decision met with opposition from taxi drivers and local governments.
In the city of Sarasota where Uber is already deregulated, this would have little impact, but City Manager Tom Barwin worries about the effect on other communities.
"We deregulated Uber here, so it's not a big burning issue, and it has worked out pretty well," said Barwin. There are communities across Florida though, that do have special insights into what is appropriate in their region."
Barwin calls this a dangerous trend.
"What this represents is the bigger concern of how corporations in America can now basically influence the system so thoroughly," said Barwin.