Thursday, July 16, 2020

Mike Hartmann WLA President Mike HartmannWisconsin — TNCs continue to beleaguer The Badger State, and the Wisconsin Limousine Association (WLA) has been battling their incoming droves by the twofold method of getting safety information to their passengers and sounding a call for increased unity among local ground transportation operations.

As members have been seeking a way to inform their clients about the dangers of TNCs with specific examples and facts, Wisconsin operators have begun utilizing the TNC position papers issued by the NLA’s Ride Responsibly initiative—and learned some unsettling things themselves in the process.

“From our meeting, one of the members asked for something simple to show customers about the percentage of TNC assaults compared to limousines and taxis,” WLA President Mike Hartmann of Stardust Limousine said. “From what I see, authorities do not keep track of where assaults and other incidents happen. What I do find interesting in the NLA paper is that the customer can be found liable if the TNC driver does not have the correct insurance and the TNC denies liability. We could tell our customers that they may be at risk for liability if their TNC driver causes injury and give them an example, like if their TNC driver hits a bike rider while a customer is in the vehicle and then the bike rider goes after the rider for damages.”

AB-918 called for the “regulation of taxicab companies and taxicab dispatch services, extending the time limit for emergency rule procedures, providing an exemption from emergency rule procedures, granting rule-making authority, and providing a criminal penalty.” On February 22, the Wisconin State Assembly voted 7-1 on it.

Papers were submitted to the state senate March 1 regarding SB-759, Streamlining Regulation of Taxicab Companies. The senate bill aims to “simplify the regulation of taxicab companies and dispatch services in Wisconsin” via a standard regulatory structure that would help “create a level playing field” and highlights the fact that companies offering similar services should be legislated the same way.

The next WLA conference call will be March 21.

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