“Lowering the bar will lead to lower standards for all,” says KAP State Leader and Member for Mt Isa Rob Katter who holds grave concerns for the future of the taxi industry following the Queensland Government’s announcement.
In response to the Premier’s announcement of a $100 million industry assistance package reported on earlier today, Mr Katter believes safety and fairness must remain the priority before any changes take place.
Mr Katter said if the government is to bow to the whims of the multinational, it shouldn’t be tax payers funding the changes.
“Using tax payers to pay for this $100 million industry assistance package is essentially subsidising Uber’s entry into this market,” Mr Katter said.
“If the multinational want to enter the field they should be putting up the funds to do so – I’ll be damned if it comes from the pockets of Queenslanders,” he said.
Mr Katter has also warned against lowering the bar on a number of vital regulatory measures put in place for safety, including fitted cameras.
“Unlicensed taxi operators and their passengers are already putting themselves in danger, as they are driving without the same protections afforded to licenced taxi services,” Mr Katter said.
“Under Queensland laws licenced taxis are required to be fitted with a working GPS, camera and audio system for protection.
“These safety measures are put in place for a reason, and often these files are used by the police to assist in their investigations – I’m concerned how removing these regulations will effect the standard of safety.
“Unfortunately it sounds as though the decision makers have forgotten the reasons these measures were introduced in the first place, in ten years time we will be introducing the same regulations all over again,” he said.
“Uber drivers have already begun to call for regulation, are we just letting history repeat itself?” he said. Mr Katter will be in Brisbane tomorrow to comment further on the matter.