Reformed buyback agreement gives taxi licence holders up to $100,000 compensation
Annika Smethurst, National politics reporter, Herald Sun
December 1, 2016 4:33pm
TAXI licence owners will be able to access up to $100,000 more in compensation after the Andrews Government succumbed to political and industry pressure and reformed its buyback agreement.
Metropolitan licence holders will be offered $100,000 for their first taxi licence raised through a $2 levy on all taxi, hire car or ride-share services trips.
The government will then offer a further $50,000 for a second, third or fourth licence, extending the cap from two to four.
The sweeping changes come ahead of a rally outside parliament this weekend in support of drivers and their families who claim the original scheme was inadequate.
Federal Labor MPs Peter Khalil and David Feeney were planning to attend the event, saying the original package offered by the State Government “simply isn’t enough”.
The two MPs said their state colleagues had “more work to do” to provide support to those financially impacted by the changes.
“Thousands of families have invested in good faith to facilitate an industry that has been getting you home safe for decades,” Mr Khalil said in a promotional video for the rally.
“This is about fairness in the transition and standing up for families who may lose their livelihoods in the process of these reforms.”
Transport Minister Jacinta Allan thanked the industry for their feedback and said the government would continue to work with drivers to deliver $50 million fund.
“The industry is changing — these reforms will ensure hardworking Victorians aren’t left behind,” she said.
Opposition public transport spokesman David Hodgett accused the government of creating a “deeply divisive” package.
“Daniel Andrews has mucked this up from the start.”