TALLAHASSEE – The tale has a acquainted ring: a disruptive new tech company connecting human beings with rides is stirring up a war inside the Legislature.
This time it’s now not experience-sharing organizations like Uber, however peer-to-peer car rental agencies which include Turo and Getaround that allow non-public owners to lease out their automobiles to others.
A Senate panel passed a invoice (SB 1148) Wednesday that defines them as condo car businesses, which could require them to pay the $2 condominium vehicle surcharge to the country.
It also mandates that the organizations have contracts with airports, requirements the upstart agencies say are harsh and pointless.
“You can name it peer-to-peer you can name it whatever you want to, it’s apartment,” stated Sen. Keith Perry, R-Gainesville, sponsor of the invoice.
Perry’s political committee, Building a Prosperous Florida, obtained a $10,000 donation from Enterprise Rent-A-Car on Feb. 26, 12 days after he filed the bill, consistent with nation marketing campaign finance information. The donation become a part of $166,500 in political giving that Enterprise made to Florida lawmakers of each predominant events and political committees benefiting each essential parties for the reason that 2016 election.
“The legislation become drafted and put forward through Enterprise Rent-a-Car,” stated Michelle Peacock, vice president of government members of the family for Turo. “They have a purpose for trying to symbolize our business as a apartment car business enterprise, and that is they don’t want the competition, quite frankly.”
Peacock cited conventional apartment corporations don’t pay income tax once they refill their fleets, saving about $181 million a yr, not like individual automobile proprietors who pay sales taxes on their vehicle and complement their income by way of a median of approximately $three hundred a month with the aid of renting out the auto.
Peacock said approximately 21,000 Floridians have signed as much as be hosts with Turo. Depending on the automobile, the price for apartment tiers from about $35 to $55 in line with day.
Enterprise lobbyist Leslie Dughi told the Senate panel her organisation just wants comparable competitors to be dealt with fairly.
“We don’t want to put them out of commercial enterprise, in truth, we suppose it’s miles a pretty neat, nifty business model,” Dughi said. But “while one person will pay cash to apply a vehicle that they don’t personal that’s a condominium transaction.”
The condominium automobile surcharge brought in $138.Four million to the state ultimate year, in line with kingdom economists. The cash goes to help pay for brand new roads and avenue preservation.
The different a part of the bill dealing with airports additionally is wanted to make sure fairness, stated Florida Airports Council lobbyist Darrick McGhee.
“For us it’s easy: we need to have an agreement with them at each airport that we’ve,” McGhee said. “Not to intrude on their business model and simply to make certain there is a not unusual floor and understanding coming into and exiting the airport platform.”
Lawmakers in 2017 passed new rules for Uber, Lyft and different rideshare corporations, but required them to settlement with airports to operate on airport grounds.
Orlando International Airport officials said they’re required with the aid of federal regulation to deal with providers at the airport within the same business equally of their contracts. They rate 10 percentage of gross income to vehicle apartment groups. The peer-to-peer vehicle sharing corporations are currently running without an agreement.
“Right now we’re now not one hundred percentage precisely sure wherein every unmarried (choose up and drop off) is happening and that’s also a difficulty that we’ve got,” said Luis Olivero, assistant director of governmental affairs for OIA, but he didn’t move into specifics.
The invoice handed on a 5-three vote, with Republicans in prefer and Democrats adversarial. But even those in choose said the invoice needed some work.
Committee chairman Tom Lee mentioned that in spite of some lawmakers’ professed affection for brand spanking new tech organizations, the airports could be gathering highly-priced costs.
“We appear to be embracing all this disruptive generation to some extent,” Lee said. “Now we don’t need to embody it unless we guard the airports.”