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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2021 - 2022 Regular Session


Posted: July 20, 2021 11:22 AM
From: Senator Christine M. Tartaglione
To: All Senate members
Subject: For-Hire Drivers Pay Act
I will soon be introducing a package of legislation to improve pay and working conditions for transportation network company (TNC) drivers utilizing ride-sharing apps (i.e. Uber, Lyft). This package will direct the Joint State Government Commission (JSGC) to study and analyze ride-sharing app economic data and instruct the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) to use results from the JSGC study to establish a minimum rate of fare for TNC rides. It will also require a Pennsylvania drivers’ license to drive for a TNC in Pennsylvania.

Please join me in sponsoring this important legislative package.

Document #1

Introduced as SB889

Description: Minimum Driver Pay Standard

Driving for ride-sharing apps, also known as TNCs, is unpredictable and carries high upfront and ongoing costs. This leaves many drivers living in poverty, despite working long hours. Revenue of TNC has consistently increased over the last decade, yet drivers have reported having to work more hours for less money. Ride fares fail to adequately account for drivers’ costs, including gas, insurance, maintenance, and higher payroll taxes due to their classification as independent contractors.

New York City and Seattle have already set minimum driver pay standards for TNC drivers. This helps guarantee minimum earnings for TNC drivers and is estimated to boost New York City drivers’ net pay by 22.5 percent. It does not establish a minimum wage for these workers – minimum wage requirements do not apply to independent contractors.

JSGC would have 12 months to study the following and issue a report to the PUC, PennDOT, and various members of the General Assembly:
  • income TNC drivers derive from operating personal vehicles that provide transportation network services to passengers;
  • traffic congestion throughout the service area of transportation network services;
  • the extent to which various categories of transportation network service vehicles contribute to such congestion;
  • traffic safety;
  • vehicle utilization rates;
  • access to services in various geographic areas of the Commonwealth for one or more categories of transportation network services;
  • the number of hours that transportation network company drivers have made themselves available to accept dispatches from a transportation network service by day or week;
  • transportation network company driver income and well-being;
  • and such other topics as the Commission deems appropriate.
After this analysis, the PUC would determine whether the establishment of minimum rates of fare would substantially alleviate any of the problems identified in the analysis. When determining these rates, the PUC would consider the following:
  • category of vehicle;
  • type of prearranged ride, including prearranged rides in which the vehicle is available for the transportation of two or more passengers;
  • rates of fare for other categories of vehicles carrying passengers for hire, including but not limited to taxicabs;
  • location of the prearranged ride;
  • and any other factors the PUC determines to be appropriate to achieve the intended rate.
Establishing minimum driver pay standards will provide economic stability to thousands of TNC drivers across the Commonwealth.

Document #2

Introduced as SB888

Description: Pennsylvania Drivers' License Requirement

Since 2018, New York City has capped the number of for-hire, ride-hailing vehicles allowed on its streets. This cap has resulted in many out-of-state drivers flooding into Philadelphia and the surrounding counties for work.

My proposal would require a Pennsylvania drivers’ license to drive for a TNC in Pennsylvania. This would apply to all trips or fairs that begin in Pennsylvania. Out-of-state drivers would still be allowed to drop-off riders in Pennsylvania if the trip originated outside of the Commonwealth.