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AFP Letter Opposing HB 907 - (Uber Bill)

March 05, 2014 J,

Dear Georgia State representative:

Please stand with consumers and business group leaders against HB 907 `UBER’ Bill”.

Americans for Prosperity Georgia, the state’s premiere grassroots organization supporting economic freedom, is in opposition to House Bill 907. We will key vote this bill and ask that you vote against this protectionist legislation.
The legislation seeks to heavily restrict ride share referral service providers like UBER, Lyft and other car-for-hire applications that connect ride-seekers to drivers. The service is an example of free market innovation at work to better serve some consumers’ needs. Such services are part of a growing new sharing economy in which ordinary people can make money using their personal assets to offer a service and receive compensation.

These new companies are already adding dynamism to long-mature supply chains. However, instead of responding to a new kind of competitor with better services, taxi and limousine companies have instead attempted to ban the competition.

Regulations – often well-intentioned – can stifle innovation and create unnecessary regulatory barriers to entry into the market. And while regulations and barriers to entry are nothing new for innovative companies, progress is being made to eliminate those roadblocks. For instance, the D.C. city council, not known to be conservative, suddenly reversed an outright ban on the service, creating in December a new class of digitally-dispatched rides.
Writing on issue, a Forbes Magazine article reads: “There’s nothing especially novel, or proprietary, about the platform Uber has built.  Nothing, in any case, that couldn’t or shouldn’t have already been implemented by existing taxi and limo services.”

Instead of responding to a new kind of competitor with better products and services, however, regulated taxi and limousine companies in every city Uber has entered have instead gone the route of trying to ban Uber’s existence. Companies like UBER and Lyft meet a need a that consumers have shown a demand for in Georgia. Competitors should embrace these same innovative examples to adapt to changing marketplace dynamics, not turn to government to try and regulate the competition out of existence. What if the horse buggy manufacturer had been successful in stamping out Henry Ford?

Ride share referral service providers meet a need a that consumers have shown a demand for in Georgia. We encourage you to vote against HB 907.

Please feel free to call me if you have any questions. I can be reached at 678-910-3010.

Sincerely,

Joe Foster
Americans for Prosperity-Georgia

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