Taxi users are being taken for a ride

June 29, 2017

Member for Euroa Steph Ryan has opposed the Victorian Government's Uber tax proposal because communities like Heathcote have no Uber service.

MEMBER for Euroa Steph Ryan is calling on the Victorian Government to reduce its proposed Uber tax on Heathcote taxi users.

Ms Ryan said Daniel Andrews wanted to add a $2 tax to the cost of every taxi trip even though Heathcote residents would get no benefit from the legalisation of ride sharing service Uber.

Ms Ryan’s comments come after a parliamentary committee tabled a report last week recommending the government reconsider its proposed taxi reform legislation, including its new $2 tax on every taxi trip.

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

Ms Ryan said this report proved the tax was unfair on country Victorian taxi users and the Victorian Government needed to change it.

“Even Daniel Andrews’ own MPs don’t support the proposed bill, that unfairly taxes regional and rural people,” she 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.

“Every person in a country town that does not have public transport is being forced to pay an extra $4 an outing. This is a significant increase and a straight out tax on country Victorians.

“Labor’s plan will be a huge impost on those who can least afford it, particularly older members in the community and those with disabilities who rely on taxis on a day-to-day basis.”

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