Contact: Thea Setterbo, 210-207-7349
San Antonio, Texas, March 7, 2017: As part of the City of San Antonio’s innovative agreement adopted in December 2016 which allows transportation networking companies (TNCs) to operate within city limits, rideshare drivers can voluntarily submit to a free 10-fingerprint background check by the San Antonio Police Department. The City, in partnership with Tech Bloc and Centro, announced today the launch of an incentive program that rewards drivers who complete the free background check with a $25 Valero gas card.
“Transportation choices are critical to a growing community,” Mayor Ivy R. Taylor said. “San Antonio’s rideshare agreement is a model for the nation and shows how a city can successfully balance public safety with innovation.”
The incentive program is paid for by TNC operating fees and funding from Tech Bloc and Centro, and comes at no expense to residents. Riders can opt for an SAPD-verified driver, who will have a T-number listed on the driver profile within the rideshare app.
“When the rideshare companies threatened to leave San Antonio, we worked with the community to craft an innovative solution that satisfied all parties,” Councilman Roberto C. Treviño said. “The tech community and Centro were solidly behind our compromise.”
The next 600 drivers who complete the free background check will receive a $25 Valero gas card, driver identification card and promotional window cling to differentiate their vehicles as “drivers of choice.” Rideshare drivers for Uber, Lyft and GetMe can submit the initial application at sanantonio.gov/rideshare.
The City created a new public service announcement to inform drivers of the perks that come with taking advantage of the free verification process. Additionally, a “verified driver profile” mirror frame and coasters promoting the program will be posted in several venues around San Antonio, including the San Antonio International Airport, where rideshare users are likely to visit.
“Drivers who participate in the program will find that the process is simple,” Police Chief William McManus said. “In return, they will earn gas cards and other materials to promote themselves as drivers of choice, while San Antonio riders win peace of mind.”
To gear up for Fiesta 2017, all drivers who complete the background check prior to April will be entered into a drawing to win a $100, $250 and $500 pre-paid gas card. Drawings will take place again in July and October, and are limited to the first 1,000 verified drivers.
As additional incentive, SAPD has streamlined the process so that drivers only have to appear twice: once to present themselves for fingerprinting and a second time to obtain their City-issued ID and $25 gas card. To date, nearly 450 rideshare drivers have applied for the program. For more information and to begin the application, visit sanantonio.gov/rideshare.