Victoria To Introduce World’s Largest Ridesharing Tax

by on 23 August, 2016

Via The Australian Taxpayers’ Alliance:

Media Release: Victoria To Introduce World’s Largest Ridesharing Tax

The Australian Taxpayers’ Alliance today condemned the Victorian Government for introducing the world’s largest tax on ridesharing consumers to fund hundreds of millions of dollars to bailout the taxi industry – and help balance their own budget on the sly.

“This is an outrageous and economically damaging tax slug by a government that is clearly more interested in bailing out mates than the taxpayers of Victoria” said Tim Andrews, Executive Director of the Australian Taxpayers’ Alliance. “There is no economic justification to bailout a dying industry because it has failed to keep up with technology as Victorians have voted with their feet. To use hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars to pay off cabbies is simply morally repugnant. This craven cash grab means Victorian will be slugged with the world’s highest tax on ridesharing. In the United States, only one state (Massachusetts) has instituted such a tax – and it was five cents!”

“The economic case against this tax is overwhelming. The Grattan Institute in a landmark report detailing the benefits of ridesharing to Victoria found that “Victoria is not legally obliged to offer compensation” and that “licence holders have made good returns on their licences”. Professor Richard Holden from the University of NSW found “the economic case for compensating existing license holders is not strong…” and that “there is a lack of publicly accessible evidence to support the argument that compensation should be paid” and that if any limited compensation was payable, it should be done out of consolidated revenue and not a great new tax.

“Make no mistake: This is a tax that will benefit multi-million dollar corporations like Cabcharge, who have been previously fined millions of dollars in the Federal Court for ripping off consumers, while reports of an epidemic of sexual assaults by Victorian cab drivers have gone unaddressed, with perpetrators protected by the industry, while ordinary drivers won’t see a cent.  Is this really who Premier Dan Andrews wishes to reword with our taxes?

“To make matters worse, this tax is set to keep slugging consumers long after the bailouts have been paid. With no sunset clause, and over 35 million taxi trips taken in Victoria a year, once hire cars and uber are counted, this tax will close to a staggering billion dollars over the next decade. This is revenue raising – pure and simple. Victorians are taxed enough already and don’t need another great new tax. If the government wants to keep the budget in the black, it should start by cutting overspending, and not slugging Victorians with another great new tax.

MEDIA CONTACT:

Tim Andrews, Executive Director, Australian Taxpayers’ Alliance
(m) 0434064934 (e) tandrews@taxpayers.org.au (w) www.taxpayers.org.au

 

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