New York City’s Taxi & Limousine Commission should “try again” if the agency wants to raise rates for the drivers providing rides for high-volume for-hire vehicle (HVFHV) passengers – this time detailing the specific reasons for doing so, said Manhattan state court Justice Arthur Engoron. A former cab driver, Engoron made the statement in January, after blocking the raise from going into effect in response to Uber claiming the TLC used a new and flawed method to calculate the increase.
In a written decision issued in January, Engoron said he “sympathizes with the plight of the ride-service drivers, whose deserved raise is being held by a legal technicality.” But the judge said he couldn’t allow the increase to go forward because the city hasn’t explained its reasoning for the change, as required by law.
The commission’s basis for the increase “completely fails to explain” why it chose particular indices and timeframes, and doesn’t include any math to illustrate how it arrived at its numbers, Engoron said. “No doubt the TLC will, and should, try again. This court strongly urges the TLC to make its new explanation as clear as possible and suggests that concrete numerical examples be given.”
Meanwhile, the Independent Drivers Guild responded to the court ruling in Uber’s lawsuit, which will further delay what the association says is a desperately-needed pay raise for NYC’s 80,000 Uber and Lyft drivers and their families. The increase in minimum driver pay, reflecting the substantial increase in driver expenses, was supposed to begin December 19, 2022 but was delayed by Uber’s lawsuit.
“The judge made clear that the raise New York’s Uber and Lyft drivers deserve is being held up by a legal technicality,” said IDG President, Brendan Sexton. “For Uber to continue to deny drivers their fair pay on a technicality is outrageous and an insult to the thousands of men and women who work tirelessly to keep our city moving. We also urge the city’s Taxi and Limousine Commission to remedy this legal technicality as quickly as possible.”
In December, the IDG organized a caravan of hundreds of FHV drivers that shut down the Brooklyn Bridge in protest of Uber’s Lawsuit.