Some great news to report. After weeks of advocacy, yesterday the state senate passed legislation to regulate ride sharing companies like Uber, Lyft, and Fasten without the proposed ban for parts of Boston. As you may remember, the ban was passed in the House and was on its way to pass in the Senate. MassFiscal focused on the unjust ban and launched a campaign focused on the Seaport area of Boston. We mailed each residence and business likely to be impacted by the ban.
Hundreds of constituents responded and followed our instructions to contact their state senator, Linda Dorcena Forry. As we got closer to the expected release date of the legislation, we patched through calls from grassroots supporters to Forry’s office and the office of Senator Jamie Eldridge, charged with crafting the legislation. Hundreds of calls flooded their offices.
The campaign was waged on multiple fronts. Removing the ban wasn’t easy. Senator Eldridge is a proponent of big government regulation and is disinclined to allow the free market to solve economic problems. Both Eldridge and Forry publicly acknowledged the MassFiscal efforts as contributing to the final bill.
The Boston Business Journal story recapping the senate debate and quoting us, you may read it here.
The Senate voted on Amendment #49, which would strike down the new 10 cent per ride tax on each completed ride through companies like Uber, Lyft, and Fasten. The money collected from this tax would be distributed to cities and towns, proportional to where each ride originated. We believe this tax taxes innovation.
The efforts to strike down the tax failed, and the amendment did not pass. 31 senators voted for the tax, while only only 9 voted against it.
We would like to thank the following Senators for voting for against the tax:
Sen. Ryan Fattman (R)
Sen. Donald Humason (R)
Sen. Mark Montigny (D)
Sen. Brian Joyce (D)
Sen. Bruce Tarr (R)
Sen. Jennifer Flanagan (D)
Sen. James Timilty (D)
Sen. Richard Ross (R)
Sen. Patrick O'Connor (R)
You can view our Scorecard of each specific senator at: http://www.massfiscalscorecard.com/189th/votes/261. We’ll keep you updated as the House and Senate agree to their final legislation.