PALM SPRINGS, Ca.
The chambers were packed tonight for discussion on two issues important to the Palm Springs community.
As usual, a very lengthy meeting, but after several hours, the city council decided to postpone a vote on giving easier access to ride sharing companies at the airport and approve the return of the "Forever Marilyn" statue to downtown. While the return of the 26-foot tall sculpture to what will be its forever home, received full support. "It got a lot of buzz all around the world about Palm Springs, and just a lot of fun, so I’m really glad," Palm Springs resident Joy Meredith said.
It was the plan that would allow companies such as Uber and Lyft to pick up and drop off passengers at the airport that caused mixed reactions. The proposal would ban those drivers from circling the airport and would instead require them to wait for passenger pickups in a staging area. Cab companies criticize the plan, saying it offers the ride sharing services a more strategic location to pick up passengers. “Uber drivers come in from any county wherever just to profit on tourists," Palm Springs cab driver Joy Southerland said. In fact, Uber and Lyft drivers disagree with that belief. They say it creates a healthy competition and most importantly keeps tourists satisfied. "Since we can drop off, why can’t we pick up, it doesn’t make sense to me," Lyft driver Barbara Klickstein said.
The council will vote on the Uber and Lyft proposal at their next meeting. As for the Marilyn statue, PS Resorts, who is fundraising to pay for the costs of the statue’s return, will negotiate with the city manager to find a location for it. According to PS Resorts Chairman Atftab Dada, the sculpture will reside in the city’s new park in downtown.