Fair and equitable compensation for taxi plate owners.

Taxi and Uber fares to jump after levy passes parliament on unfair buyback in WA

As stated in WA Today, WA’s on-demand transport industry is set for its biggest shakeup ever following the passage of the historic reforms through parliament on Thursday evening.

The reforms include a 10 per cent levy on all taxi, rideshare and small charter vehicle fares to pay for a $120 million four-year taxi plate buyback scheme.

Plate owners will receive between $100,000 and $250,000 depending on how long they owned the plate.  NOTE THAT THE BUSINESS MODEL DEDUCTS INCOME EARN’T PER ANNUM WHICH TAX HAS BEEN PAID ON. THIS IS NOT A FAIR BUYBACK.

The reforms, to be rolled out early 2019, also include new safety obligations, remove restrictions on when and where taxis can operate and introduce one annual authorisation for all types of on-demand drivers.

The state government is hailing the passage of the Transport (Road Passenger Services) Bill 2018 as a win for the industry, which has been plagued with uncertainty since rideshare companies like Uber hit WA roads.

Transport Minister Rita Saffioti said this was the most comprehensive overhaul of taxi and on-demand transport industry in the state’s history and would ultimately give customers more choice of improved services.

“For customers, these reforms mean more choice, stronger safety standards and ultimately reduced costs for industry and customers,” she said.

“I understand that not everyone is happy with the reform, but I believe it strikes the right

Taxi and on-demand transport reform coordinator and member for Armadale Tony Buti said throughout 2017 and 2018 more than 60 hours of consultation took place with plate owners, taxi drivers, management companies, industry associations and booking services.

The process had been marred by controversy with MANY taxi OWNERS upset at the size of the buyback.

In April Uber called on the government to halve the 10 per cent levy.

Uber state manager Kate Debenham said it was good to see the government finalise reforms that recogniseed ridesharing as a key part of the transport mix in WA and they would continue to advocate for policies that supported affordable transport.

Charter vehicle operators had called for their sector to be exempt because the10 per cent levy would eat into their already small profits.

Charter vehicle driver Gavin Duffy wasn’t happy with the legislation and took aim at politicians’ handling of the issue since Uber arrived.

“Given that the legitimate charter vehicle industry is the innocent party to this appalling decision whilst our businesses are being destroyed, there will be a concerted effort by us along with the taxi industry to have the Liberal and Labor parties eliminated from their seats at the next election,” he said.

“We, the charter vehicle industry have been treated with nothing but contempt by both the Liberal and Labor parties since Uber have come to town.”

In September Dr Buti and Ms Saffioti received death threats at their home.

The state government secured the Nationals’ support for the legislation by exempting regional operators from the levy and the Greens’ support by exempting electric vehicles.


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