Community facilities | June 13, 2017

Changes recommended to ‘Uber’ tax

A parliamentary Committee has recommended the Andrews Labor Government reconsider its proposed taxi reform legislation, including its new $2 tax on every taxi trip.

A report tabled in Parliament last week by the Economy and Infrastructure Committee recommended amendments to the Commercial Passenger Vehicle Industry Bill 2017.

Daniel Andrews’ own Labor MPs were among the Committee members who have recommended to amend the Bill to “provide for a reduced rate of levy in rural and regional areas” and that the Government consider reducing the $2 levy.

The Nationals Member for Lowan, Emma Kealy MP said this report proved the ‘Uber’ tax was unfair on country Victorian taxi users and the Andrews Labor Government needed to change it.

“Even Daniel Andrews’ own MPs don’t support the proposed Bill, that unfairly taxes regional and rural people,” Ms Kealy said.

“If Daniel Andrews again breaks his promise not to introduce any new taxes, a lower rate for regional passengers that have limited public transport options, is a sensible outcome.

“For country people, a tax on taxi trips is a tax on people who can’t take the bus home with the weekly groceries, or travel to and from the doctors.

“Often, these are short trips, so Daniel Andrews’ proposed $2 tax is a significant increase.

“Many of our smaller communities have limited access to various public transport options and this new tax will make local transport more expensive.

“Our local taxi drivers and taxi business operators provide a wonderful service within our regional communities, with many local people and families depending on their reliable and friendly service,” she said.

The Committee also recommended extending existing Multi Purpose Taxi Program concessions to all trips and exempting these concession holders from the $2 tax.

“This new tax is one of eleven that has already been announced or implemented by Daniel Andrews despite the fact that on election eve he promised no new taxes,” Ms Kealy said.

“Consumers and the taxi industry have been stuffed around by the Andrews Labor Government for too long and its time they were given the certainty to plan for their future with confidence,” she said.

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