Now, in Uber v Taxi drama, Massachusetts has come up with a unique way of supporting the traditional taxi industry as it comes under pressure from ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft. The state has decided to tax ride-sharing services and spending whatever it brings in from that tax on the traditional taxi industry.
Massachusetts will levy a 5-cent fee per trip on rides booked using services like Uber and Lyft. Governor Charlie Bake has already signed the fee into law.
Many taxi owners believe that the law should be strict for services like this. They even suggest that ride-sharing services should be banned unless they meet the same requirements that taxis have to, requirements that include regular vehicle inspection by the police.
The ride-sharing industry is obviously not happy about this, but the law is all about enabling traditional taxi businesses to adopt “new technologies and advanced service, safety and operational capabilities” while also supporting workforce development.
To be clear, this 5-cent per ride fee will be paid by the companies themselves and not be passed on either to the drivers or the riders. The fee will be collected through to the end of 2021. It will eventually go away by the end of 2026 though.