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State-NewsRICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ Virginia is allowing ride-sharing companies Uber and Lyft to operate here under a temporary agreement between the companies and the state. Officials had told the companies in June to cease operations in Virginia because they didn’t have the proper licenses. Ride-sharing companies like Uber and Lyft use smartphone apps to dispatch drivers who use their own personal vehicles to give people rides. The drivers then share the fares they collect with the companies. Gov. Terry McAuliffe and Attorney General Mark Herring said Wednesday that the agreement will help ensure passenger safety, promote a level playing field for transportation providers and bring the companies into compliance with Virginia law. The companies can begin operating immediately. But they must meet various terms, including background checks for drivers and rigorous insurance requirements.