Taxi industry rejects NSW Government’s ‘final offer’ of $905 million assistance package

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The NSW Government has presented a final assistance package to NSW taxi licence holders worth a total of $905 million.

The extra cash injection will see the passenger service levy (PSL) increase by 20 cents to $1.20 (ex GST) and be extended to 2030.

According to Transport for NSW data, the package is more than double the compensation offered by the Victorian Government and more than nine times the package offered by the Queensland Government.

NSW Minister for Transport, Veterans and Western Sydney David Elliott and Minister for Regional Transport and Roads Sam Farraway made the announcement today and said the changes to the financial assistance package were as a result of continued discussions and feedback from representatives from the taxi industry.

This now takes the total assistance package, designed to help fully deregulate the industry, from $645 million to $905 million.

Mr Elliott said the final assistance package delivered fair and equitable financial assistance to all taxi licence holders across the state.

“I urge the taxi industry to support this generous package so that taxi licence owners receive the money they deserve as soon as possible,” Mr Elliott said.

The new package provides $150,000 for every Sydney metropolitan taxi licence holder with a cap of 6 plates. Each regional taxi plate will be paid between $40,000 and $195,000, with no cap on the number of plates.

Mr Faraway said the NSW Government had presented the most generous taxi assistance package in the country.

“This package is our final offer and should it be accepted by the NSW Taxi Council and its members then the funding will be in the bank accounts of taxi owners as soon as early next year,” Mr Faraway said.

‘The offer is still short’:

Following the assistance package announcement this morning, the NSW Taxi Council CEO Martin Rogers said the state government needed to do more.

“It’s not just us, it’s other MPs across a number of parties who have said to me, the offer presented last night is still short,” Mr Rogers told ABC News.

Mr Rogers wants taxi drivers to get $350,000 per car, which he said was the value of a taxi licence in 2015, when companies like Uber were permitted to legally operate.

“They got these from the government and they still have significant loans against them,” Mr Rogers said. “Getting $150,000 still leaves them with a debt but no asset or income.”

Should this final package not be accepted by the taxi industry, legislation will not be introduced.

A Government appointed review will then be launched to assess a compensation package, based on the existing passenger service levy.

READ MORE: ‘Wanted to leave a legacy for my kids’: NSW taxi licence owners repeat calls for fair compensation.

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