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This is a good read, especially for those involved in the advocacy push.

http://www.austinmonitor.com/stories/2015/08/city-staff-asks-uber-lyft-accountability/
Here we go again!

Update: Debbee Hancock, who handles communications with Uber Technologies, responded: "In only one year, Uber has made it easy for Austinites to ditch their keys when drinking by providing millions of safe ride and empowering more than ten thousand drivers to earn $27 million… Cities and states across the nation have followed Austin's progressive lead to embrace responsible regulations that support innovation. At a time when ridesharing is driving Austin forward, we're surprised that ATD would consider taking this giant leap backwards."
 

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Here we go again!

Update: Debbee Hancock, who handles communications with Uber Technologies, responded: "In only one year, Uber has made it easy for Austinites to ditch their keys when drinking by providing millions of safe ride and empowering more than ten thousand drivers to earn $27 million… Cities and states across the nation have followed Austin's progressive lead to embrace responsible regulations that support innovation. At a time when ridesharing is driving Austin forward, we're surprised that ATD would consider taking this giant leap backwards."
Their is the innovation word Uber likes to throw around.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
What scares me about the article is talk about registering with the city (translation: get a permit)... I do think the city ought to press alll TNCs harder about data. Really, as part of the allowance the demand for the same data taxi companies provide should have been made to the TNCs.
 

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Haven't read the article yet but I find it funny that this is happening to them. Too bad they don't have hundreds of happy, local driver advocates to speak out on their behalf!! If it wasn't so predictable (and potentially damaging to us) it would be really comical.
 

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Ten Thousand drivers? And $27 Million? By the way, as overrated as those numbers must be, that is still only $2700 per driver lol.
LOL! YES! Thank you for pointing that out. As usual, Uber execs are full of shit with their PR-laden sound bites, but even when trying to look good they expose the truth: they've rigged it so that there's nothing for us (drivers) in this game.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Obviously they have ten thousand plus drivers, why else would they be recruiting like the dickens on the radio???
 

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Using their own words against them may be one of our greatest potential weapons.
They're touting 10,000 drivers, that has to be total sign ups. How many of those only drove one weekend, or not at all?
 

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What scares me about the article is talk about registering with the city (translation: get a permit)... I do think the city ought to press alll TNCs harder about data. Really, as part of the allowance the demand for the same data taxi companies provide should have been made to the TNCs.
I will get flamed for this, but here it goes.
Why would a permit be an issue?
Regulation when dealing with the general public, helps limit lawsuits, promotes public safety, and keeps the playing field level so that all businesses big and small have equal footing to ply their trade.
Before trade unions robber barons preyed upon the working class. There were no laws in place regarding child labor, overtime pay or a minimum wage. Workers were sometimes literally worked to death, and another desperate soul stepped in to tale their place. They made pennies per day, and the robber barons, these great captains of industry, became rich beyond belief.

Deregulation of the securities industry led to the 2008 recession, wiped out the retirement savings of tens of thousands of people, and plummeted real estate value in some areas by as much as 60-70%. This after strong regulation and oversight led the United States to be the premier economy from the 1940's to the 1980's
Lack of oversight in a market economy leads to exploitation of the most vulnerable. Uber wants everyone to believe that they are operating in a free market and that their rates are reflective of that market. Nothing could be further from the truth. They use the heat maps to attempt to manipulate driver concentration in various parts of the city, they undercut rates, which they shouldn't be setting in the first place if they aren't a transportation company, and they attempt to lie and bully their way into not having to comply with local regulations. They have pushed their way into a previously pretty closed market, but it's time to either put on the big boy pants and act like adults, or risk being spanked by local authorities, state governments and federal law repeatedly.
 

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"In some cases, Derr added, TNCs have agreed to requirements in other cities that are more stringent than the ones they agreed to in Austin. "There were several things that the Council was told that they couldn't do that apparently other places were doing," he said. "We feel that we should be up there. If they're doing it other places, why not do it here?" - See more at: http://www.austinmonitor.com/stories/2015/08/city-staff-asks-uber-lyft-accountability/#.dpuf

When other cities didn't back down, Uber found a way to comply...
 

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Before trade unions robber barons preyed upon the working class. There were no laws in place regarding child labor, overtime pay or a minimum wage. Workers were sometimes literally worked to death, and another desperate soul stepped in to tale their place. They made pennies per day, and the robber barons, these great captains of industry, became rich beyond belief.
Sounds a lot like how UBER is treating it's drivers.
 

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What scares me about the article is talk about registering with the city (translation: get a permit)... I do think the city ought to press alll TNCs harder about data. Really, as part of the allowance the demand for the same data taxi companies provide should have been made to the TNCs.
Why does it scare you to get a permit? That is one regulation our company, and every one I know of fully supports. I support it as a business person, in general. I think the test needs to be modified, not really sure there should be a TEST, but maybe just to cover parking, trolling, zoned areas, street closure notification sites, etc.

Having a permit on file gives at least some central way to get a BAD driver scrubbed asap. Now, I'm the first to say they need to get their regulatory system in place, because the GT 'division manager' should not have controlling authority about approval, it should not be a subjective process.

Furthermore, we don't allow any other business from, say...Houston..to just set up shop on the sidewalk downtown in front of another business which paid it's business dues to open. Why is it OK for hundreds to show up from out of town and destroy yours and my driver's jobs during large events? If they want to come to Austin and drive, they should file for a 'business permit' like the rest of us. Those fees are designed to fund the GT enforcement agency. I am NOT - (repeat NOT) a fan of this office at the moment, but that is due to some abuse of power. The power itself is not a bad thing. The streets of Austin are not designed to handle the traffic, and we do need some law and order during festivals and other major events. That has to be funded somehow.
 

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"In some cases, Derr added, TNCs have agreed to requirements in other cities that are more stringent than the ones they agreed to in Austin. "There were several things that the Council was told that they couldn't do that apparently other places were doing," he said. "We feel that we should be up there. If they're doing it other places, why not do it here?" - See more at: http://www.austinmonitor.com/stories/2015/08/city-staff-asks-uber-lyft-accountability/#.dpuf

When other cities didn't back down, Uber found a way to comply...
This battle is not over. The bloom dropped from this rose quite some time ago, but some of the biggest champions lost their seats and newcomers are struggling to learn just what was handed to them. There are a lot of valid, and actionable complaints coming in, and ATX Mobility commission has little choice but to deal with them.
 

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I will get flamed for this, but here it goes.
Why would a permit be an issue?
Regulation when dealing with the general public, helps limit lawsuits, promotes public safety, and keeps the playing field level so that all businesses big and small have equal footing to ply their trade.
Before trade unions robber barons preyed upon the working class. There were no laws in place regarding child labor, overtime pay or a minimum wage. Workers were sometimes literally worked to death, and another desperate soul stepped in to tale their place. They made pennies per day, and the robber barons, these great captains of industry, became rich beyond belief.

Deregulation of the securities industry led to the 2008 recession, wiped out the retirement savings of tens of thousands of people, and plummeted real estate value in some areas by as much as 60-70%. This after strong regulation and oversight led the United States to be the premier economy from the 1940's to the 1980's
Lack of oversight in a market economy leads to exploitation of the most vulnerable. Uber wants everyone to believe that they are operating in a free market and that their rates are reflective of that market. Nothing could be further from the truth. They use the heat maps to attempt to manipulate driver concentration in various parts of the city, they undercut rates, which they shouldn't be setting in the first place if they aren't a transportation company, and they attempt to lie and bully their way into not having to comply with local regulations. They have pushed their way into a previously pretty closed market, but it's time to either put on the big boy pants and act like adults, or risk being spanked by local authorities, state governments and federal law repeatedly.
I believe permits should be EASY to obtain, but in cases where public safety is clearly a factor, should be obtained nonetheless. It is imperative that a city this size has a thriving, RELIABLE transportation infrastructure. When the city tries to attract conventions, etc...transportation is a very important factor. The city does need to have a general idea what the move rate is, max capacity estimates, etc. Permitted operators are able to share that information in the interest of planning. It is also useful for emergency management. Whether you are driving a bus, a limo, a sedan, SUV, taxi, or peddling a cab, you are in this public transportation pool. The public may scream for UberIceCream when gimmicks are introduced, but just wait until there is a major event, or catastrophe, or an unthinkable incident with an Uber vehicle. They turn to the CITY immediately for solutions.
 

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Some of those suggestions are actually beneficial to the drivers. I am all for safety and fairness. I don't see anything in the proposals that alarm me. I don't like having all those "stickers" and "permits" all over my car, but I guess I could adapt.

Thanks for posting that,
 

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Some of those suggestions are actually beneficial to the drivers. I am all for safety and fairness. I don't see anything in the proposals that alarm me. I don't like having all those "stickers" and "permits" all over my car, but I guess I could adapt.

Thanks for posting that,
If you pay to play (and that is going to happen) you will be glad you have it. Actually, those stickers provide a little bargaining power. You will truly be able to say "you work for me" when you approach city staff. Now, of course, I wish I could say that was worth more than UbetStock (haha!), but it will legitimize you. and, when the next knock off car service comes to town to displace you without paying any local fees, imagine the bargaining power when you tell the city "fix this, or we will all pull our stickers off our vehicles" . Granted, we get a lot of talk of such threats among the black car operators, but they are fairly meek, conservative, well behaved chumps in most cases, and chicken out when push comes to shove. In the case of Uber drivers, there will be many many more voices to reckon with.
 

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I can not open the link so IF I'm off the mark here forgive me.

Basically what I'm seeing is that this link of SUGGESTIONS (my words) is that the city have for each and every Uber driver a decal(s) and a fee for these window decals will be assessed. We all know UBER will not pay the fee's. IF the fee's are lets say the same as a Taxi's then it will kill anyone from driving. Most of us are doing this as part time and thus not raking in the huge bucks to pay for these fee's. On the other hand if the fee's are around the same as the fee's for a persons LP Tag's then I would not be against it.

I'm assuming it would be a renewable 1yr type decal same as the LP Tag's.
 
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