Asking for Justice…Rod moved for the government to acknowledge that taxi licences were valuable items of property and to repair the damage of past reforms.
Today Rod read in his motion which he will debate in the Upper House tomorrow afternoon.
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I give notice that, on the next day of meeting, I will move —
That this House —
- acknowledges that —
- in 1998, the High Court of Australia determined that a taxi licence was a valuable item of property;
- since the commencement of the Commercial Passenger Vehicle Industry Act 2017, the revocation of perpetual Victorian taxi and hire car licences amounted to a compulsory government asset acquisition;
- the revocation of perpetual Victorian taxi and hire car licences for a fraction of their worth constitutes as a breach of the Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities Act 2006;
- arbitrary transition assistance payments in lieu of some, but not all, perpetual Victorian taxi and hire car licences was grossly inadequate and unfair;
- the deregulation of the industry in 2017 has —
- created a glut of commercial passenger vehicles on our roads;
- reduced driver income to well below minimum wage;
- threatened the economic viability of the industry;
- caused worsening traffic congestion;
- calls on the Andrews Government to —
(a) accept a financial proposal to properly compensate the industry for the compulsory asset acquisition of all perpetual Victorian taxi and hire car licences;
(b) make adjustments to the commercial passenger vehicle industry structure to better balance market components and end driver exploitation; and
(c) support a recovery plan to build back and move the commercial passenger vehicle industry forward through COVID-19.
Mr BARTON (Eastern Metropolitan) (09:50): Around three years ago I sat down at a dinner table with a couple of my mates, Mr Andre Baruch and Nadav Prawer. Nadav is a lawyer, and we were discussing the illegal entry into Victoria of Uber. That evening set the wheels in motion that brought us to 3 May, when the law firm Maurice Blackburn filed in the Supreme Court a class action against Uber. We started this originally just for our original members, but this has now grown to Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and Western Australia. This is going to be the largest class action this country has ever seen. I am very happy to be able to say that, and I am very proud of all of those people who have joined together to tell Uber that they are not making the rules. I am very happy about that.
I am pleased to present the amendments to this motion for a number of reasons, but particularly because it is the main reason I was elected into this place and I think it is one of the most important jobs I need to do here.
Eastern Metro MP and Transport Matters Party leader Rod Barton has called for an immediate review of the governments commercial passenger vehicle reforms.
It is an honour and a privilege to address this house as a member of the Legislative Council for Eastern Metropolitan Region. I am a lucky man, but I believe strongly that luck can be manufactured. I am here today representing an industry that has seen major changes over the past few years. We have unfinished business in this place and our industry needs some luck, and we need some hope.
Addressing some unfinished business for the taxi and car hire industry will be a priority for newly elected member for eastern metropolitan region Rod Barton.
In his maiden speech to the legislative council today Mr Barton expressed the devastation of many thousands of families who faced the loss of their live savings when the taxi and car hire industry was deregulated on 9 August 2017.