ATLOA have approached One Nation for possible support as they intend to promote candidates in SA.
Uber drivers subject to same strict legal requirements as taxi operators
Sarah Vogler, The Courier-Mail
January 25, 2017 12:30am
UBER drivers would be forced to provide their ABNs and trip data to Queensland’s Transport Department as well as the Australian Taxation Office under a plan to ensure they are complying with the same tax laws as taxi licence holders.
It is understood Transport Minister Stirling Hinchliffe has been discussing the plan with both the Taxi Council of Queensland and Uber as part of consultation with the industry, which began earlier this month.
The Courier-Mail understands that under the Government’s second wave of industry reforms, all booking platforms would be required to share their trip data with the department and all providers would need to be associated with a booking platform, meaning no one would be exempt from the regulations.
Services that use GPS will also be compelled to provide ride data to the department, with any identifying details removed to ensure customer information is not shared.
It is understood that data would also be shared with the ATO.
All providers would also be required to have a physical presence in Australia and to be compliant with Australian tax law.
They must also be fully insured.
It comes after The Courier-Mail yesterday revealed Mr Hinchliffe was working with the taxi and limousine industries in a bid to quell discontent following last year’s legalisation of ride-sharing services such as Uber, with changes to compensation among measures being discussed.
A second tranche of measures to address the legalisation of ride-sharing services is due to be introduced into State Parliament early this year.
One Nation has seized on discontent within the taxi industry, with Senator Pauline Hanson and her newly minted state leader Steve Dickson yesterday addressing a taxi industry meeting and promising to address concerns, ensuring it will become a key election issue if the Government does not act.
Mr Hinchliffe confirmed the Government was looking at ways to ensure tax law compliance following concerns raised at the meetings he had held with the industry.
Ensuring compliance was a recommendation of the Varghese review into how the state should handle the emergence of ride-sharing services such as Uber.
The Commonwealth also announced a tax crackdown on ride-sharing services last year.
“The tax obligations of ride-share drivers have been among the matters raised with the Government during the workshops we’ve held with the taxi and limousine industry as part of ongoing consultation in relation to the new regulatory environment,” Mr Hinchliffe said.
“Taxi and limousine operators pay tax as do their employees. Ride-share drivers shouldn’t be any different.
“By making sure everybody pays the taxes they should be we’re helping to create a level playing field, and it also ensures the Australian Government has the funds it needs to continue contribute to the delivery of services and big-ticket infrastructure projects across Queensland.
“We are continuing our dialogue with industry on this issue and will have more to say in coming weeks.”
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk yesterday ruled out increasing the pool of compensation available to affected limo and taxi licence holders, but confirmed moves were afoot to potentially change the amount available from within that $100 million pool.
Currently the compensation scheme allows for $20,000 per taxi service licence, capped at two licences per licence holder, and $10,000 per limousine service licence (other than special purpose limousines) with no licence cap.