From The Center Square:
Illinois House passes bill some say could ‘drive’ rideshare businesses out of the state
(The Center Square) – Some state lawmakers are looking to hold rideshare companies in Illinois to the same standard as other common carriers like taxis.
State Rep. Jennifer-Gong Gershowitz, D-Glenview, introduced House Bill 2231, which would set up a new standard for companies like Uber and Lyft by getting rid of an exemption that says rideshare companies are not responsible for their drivers.
Gong-Gershowitz explained her measure on Thursday.
“House Bill 2231 puts rideshare companies like Uber and Lyft on the same playing field as taxis and other common carriers,” Gong-Gershowitz said. “The policy rationale for granting this statutory exemption nearly a decade ago no longer makes sense, and its extended use harms public safety.”
State Rep. Patrick Windhorst, R-Harrisburg, asked about the additional costs this measure could have on rideshare companies.
“Was there any concern expressed about the increase in costs affecting the ability of these companies to operate in Illinois or affecting their operations in Illinois,” Windhorst asked.
Gong-Gershowitz did not give a clear answer to the question but said the focus should be on the passenger’s safety.
“Once a rider gets into that car, they can ensure that the utmost standard applies to them whether they are in an Uber, Lyft or taxi or any other common carrier,” Gong-Gershowitz said.
Windhorst warned some companies could end up wanting to leave the state.
“One of the reasons these entities have been so successful has been the costs involved are not as great as the other entities,” Windhorst said.
“By increasing regulations or burdens on business, we may drive them out.”
Gong-Gershowitz said lawmakers have failed to hold these companies accountable for their care of riders.
“This body continues to grant a certain business that exemption from the highest body of care,” Gong-Gershowitz said.
The bill passed the House 73-36 and now awaits to be sent to the Illinois Senate.
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Here is the House roll call of the bill on which State Rep. Suzanne Ness is a co-sponsor:
Next up, giving rides to your family or friends.
A Glenview JAP has spoken as she jumps in her Range Rover to drive down to Springfield and thinks up creative ways to ruin this state as she passes through hours and hours of cornfields.
This will mostly hurt poor people.
I’m not surprised someone from Glenview introduced it.
Not only is she from a rich area, she likely has her transportation subsidized by taxpayers as a member of the legislature.
Or, from her campaign funds.
This Illinois legislation HB 2231 is much ado about nothing, and all due respect to state Rep. Patrick Windhorst, his claim is an exaggeration.
The biggest reason ride-hailing companies have been successful is due to their business model of allowing their workers to be independent contractors who can be Transportation Network Providers (TNP) & without being W2 employees.
That’s the real fight with Uber and Lyft, and all this legislation does is remove an exemption to level the playing field but does not touch workers classification.
The big battle royale will come if/when the state, or possibly Congress and/or U.S. Deparment of Labor attempt to reclassify TNP drivers as employees from 1099 independent contractors like California has been attempting to do the past 3 years through their AB5 law.
Should be noted, Illinois’ Future of Work Task Force issued multiple recommendations to reclassify workers in multiple industries to W2 employees when the Task Force issued its final report last year.
On that front, Uber & Lyft, along with other app-based businesses like Grubhub, InstaCart & DoorDash, won two big court victories this past week.
First, a California appellate court struck down nearly all of a lower court ruling nullifying the passage of Proposition 22 in 2020. The ballot initiative approved by over 57% of the statewide vote, exempts all app-based businesses from AB5’s test to reclassify workers from 1099 independent contractors to W2 employees.
Had Prop 22 not passed in 2020, Uber & Lyft would have left California as media reports said they’d do.
The 2nd court victory this past week, the U.S. Court of Appeals Ninth Circuit ruled the AB5 law could have violated the equal protection clause since the law originally targeted app-based businesses but ended up targeting many other businesses.
The case was sent back to District Court to determine the constitutionality under equal protection for AB5.
Bloomberg Law wrote about both rulings and can be viewed here:
Compared with those developments, Uber & Lyft setback in Illinois with House passage of HB2231 was little more than minor, and the possible federal legal precedent could have impact in Illinois when lawmakers attempt to implement the Future of Work Task Force recommendation.
Overall, nationally, was a very good week for Uber & Lyft.
Yeah, that’s it, bring back taxi’s charging $30 to go four blocks.
Seriously, are the Democrats TRYING to collapse the state?!?
** Yeah, that’s it, bring back taxi’s charging $30 to go four blocks.**
LOL – You haven’t compared Uber and cab prices lately.
Cabs have consistently been cheaper than Uber/Lyft for the past couple of years everytime I’ve hailed a car (and I often check multiple apps).
Fly out of O’Hare once a month.
$65 Uber versus $125 for Cab.
I’ll stick with Uber, also leaving the sticky Faux leather seat and overwhelming curry smell back with the taxi…
Can u say union bs!
Who is good ng to be paid off for this suggestion?
What’s is the purpose of this,to disrupt an honest enterprise that contribute to the Illinois economy, supplementing retires income,providing lawful revenues for various cities and state surly the tax revenues are beneficial..and moving people around. 🤔
What’s behind this?
To whom it may concern:
I am an uber drive Uber helps supplement my fixed income. I’ve experienced age discrimination in other jobs and it scares me to think i’d have to compete with others more than half my age should this bill pass. I’d also lose the flexibility of choosing my work hours,etc. It would be devastating to many other rideshare drivers who may or may not also be in their twilight years.
Aside from myself i’d like to address a couple other issues ie drivers and passengers.
uber/lyft Drivers vs taxis:
The sponsor of this bill has no experience as a rideshare driver. She would never drive to a questionable neighborhood as taxis are notorious at never picking up dropping off passengers in these areas of chicago. She doesn’t understand the costs involved for rideshare drivers. I would need to make $30 an hour just to clear $20 due to maintenance especially driving on terrible chicago pothole filled roads. Plus train and traffic holdups. Weather. Plus gas etc. I take home $10-$15 an hour BEFORE TAXES.
If you add in potential TNC restrictions would drive uber (me for sure) out of the market. Uber/lyft are required to have $1million insurance to cover passengers. My passengers feel safe and have told me of the horror stories of taking buses or trains vs my taking them safely to their homes from point A to point B. is worth a few extra dollars to them. The argument of passengers only having safety issues doesn’t hold water when you consider drivers are also at risk. Uber documents riders were the accused party in 43% of the company’s sexual assault claims. Also uber/lyft drivers use their own vehicles. Add that to the above list of costs/risks we uber drivers face and the question is is $10-$15 an hour worth it? Apparently so as we uber drivers love the work hour flexibility.
In my five years of picking up/dropping off hundreds of chicagoland passengers with both uber and lyft i’ve never had one complaint of endangering anyone especially female passengers which is HB 2231’s main focus which TNC will supposedly prevent/minimize. Uber will immediately deactivate me if any woman complained about any misbehavior on my part. I could then appeal this decision and provide evidence of the passenger just venting anger on myself. Is why uber drivers use webcams to support their position. If you look at the statistics uber is safer than taxis for both assault and deaths in hundreds of millions of trips. And also compared nationally. I undergo periodic background checks, and continual screening as well as having to provide vehicle maintenance checks every six months, as well as maintaining adequate insurance.
TNC will eliminate thousands of uber lyft drivers versus much fewer taxis staying on the road will place the poorer less advantaged out of reach of rideshare as costs will go through the roof. Uber is accused of surge pricing in certain areas based on supply and demand. Taxis also have their own form of surge pricing by adjusting base prices. The below link is an excellent overview of uber vs taxi costs. The rich will get richer or at least have their own way with deeper pockets, seems this bill will profit. I suggest the sponsor of HB2231 put herself in an uber drivers shoes (which will never happen). I’m sure she’d have second thoughts.
Please do not pass HB2231