Press Release

For Immediate Release

 

OTTAWA, CTA supporting Federal Budget decision to impose HST/GST tax on ride-sharing service – May 15, 2017
Marc André Way presenting to the Standing Committee on Finance
RAJ GREWAL addressing Marc André Way


OTTAWA, Canadian Taxi Association and UNIFOR address the Department of Finance – March 2, 2017

Requesting Amendments to Increase Collection of GST/HST from Ride-Sharing Companies and Affiliated Drivers

Mr. Keenan:
We are writing to address a significant inequity in the application of GST/HST that has a substantial impact on us and our members and to request a meeting with you to discuss our serious concerns.

CANADIAN TAXI ASSOCIATION
The Canadian Taxi Association is the voice for Canada’s taxi industry. Our members consist of the largest taxi companies in most major cities across Canada. We speak for an industry of 30,000 taxicab owner-operators and over 50,000 taxicab drivers, which undertake over $2 billion in consumer transactions annually.

UNIFOR
Unifor is Canada’s largest private sector union, with more than 310,000 members across the country, working in every major sector of the Canadian economy. Over 30,000 of our members are employed in federally regulated sectors including transportation, communications, and financial services.

GST/HST AMENDMENT REQUIRED
All taxi operators in Canada are required to be registered for GST/HST purposes and to charge and collect, report and remit GST/HST on their fares regardless of their annual revenues.
Ride-Sharing Companies (“RSCs”) – such as Uber and TappCar – and their drivers are not required to be registered, typically are not registered, and do not charge and collect, report or remit any GST/HST.
This creates a significant competitive disadvantage for our drivers and members, and provides a direct competitive advantage to RSCs and their drivers.
Accordingly, we call on the Government of Canada to address this clear inequity by amending the Excise Tax Act (“ETA”) to require the registration of all RSCs for GST/HST purposes – regardless of whether they are located in Canada or outside Canada – and to impose an obligation upon them to collect, report, and remit GST/HST on the fees they earn, or, at a minimum, to impose such obligation on their affiliated drivers, so as to level the playing field between them and our drivers and members.
Specifically, we are requesting one of the following actions:
• Amend the definition of “taxi business” in subsection 123(1) of the ETA, such that it will generally apply to RSC Drivers carrying on business in Canada. As a result of this amendment, RSC Drivers will be required to register for GST/HST, regardless of whether they are considered “small suppliers” under section 148 of the ETA, and to charge and collect GST/HST on their fares; or
• Introduce provisions in the ETA which impose a GST/HST collection obligation on RSCs, rather than RSC Drivers. This could be accomplished by introducing a simplified registration for foreign-based digital service providers, and a further provision which deems that RSCs, rather than RSC Drivers, are the suppliers of the transportation services.
Our reasons for recommending these measures above are to:
• Ensure a fair, equitable, and consistent application of the GST to all suppliers in the private transportation industry (including taxis and RSCs);
• Maintain a competitive private transportation industry, unburdened by arbitrary taxation preferences;
• Simplify the application of the GST in the private transportation industry, for both consumers and suppliers;
• Ensure stability of the Federal Government’s GST/HST revenues from the RSCs and their drivers, just as our members and drivers collect, report, and remit GST/HST for the government’s benefit; and
• Improve the operation of the GST for the benefit of all Canadians.

HISTORY & CONTEXT
Since the introduction of the GST in 1990, the ETA has provided a registration exception for “small suppliers”. In general terms, if a person has annual revenues of less than $30,000, the person is a “small supplier” under section 148 and may choose not to register for GST/HST. As a result, the “small supplier” is generally not required to collect and remit GST/HST in respect of its taxable supplies.
Initially the small supplier registration exception applied to taxicab operators. However, after amendments were made in 1993 (made effective 17 December 1990), subsection 240(1.1) of the ETA requires that “every small supplier who carries on a taxi business is required to be registered for the purposes of [Part IX of the ETA] in respect of that business.”

“Taxi business” is defined in subsection 123(1) as “a business carried on in Canada of transporting passengers by taxi for fares that are regulated under the laws of Canada or a province”.

The 1993 amendments to the ETA were made following consultations by the Department of Finance and Government of Canada with the Canadian taxicab industry. The amendments were introduced as a means of ensuring that the “taxi industry operates under a consistent pricing structure”, where all taxi fares are inclusive of GST.

At the time the amendments were made, the concern was that two-tier pricing for taxicab fares would emerge as a result of the different ownership and management structures in the taxicab industry. For instance, some taxicabs are owned and operated by the same person, whereas in other instances, companies hire employees to operate a fleet of taxicabs. In circumstances where taxicabs are owned and operated by the same person, prior to the 1993 amendments, these operators could have potentially taken advantage of the “small supplier” registration exception and, as a result, would not have been required to collect GST from their customers. Consequently, these “small supplier” taxicab operators would have had a significant pricing advantage over other taxicabs operators that were not “small suppliers”.

The 1993 amendments remedied the potential for two-tier pricing by requiring all taxicab operators to register for GST, regardless of whether they are considered “small suppliers” under section 148 of the ETA. This resulted in a fair and consistent application of the GST to all suppliers in the private transportation industry.

RSCs & THE GST/HST
More than 20 years later, with the entrance of RSCs into Canada’s private transportation industry, a similar two-tier pricing issue has arisen.

Although RSCs and their Drivers offer a service that is interchangeable with the service offered by taxicabs, unlike taxicabs, RSC Drivers are able to take advantage of the “small supplier” registration exception. As a consequence, “small supplier” RSC Drivers have a significant pricing advantage with customers, simply as a consequence of the inconsistent application of GST/HST.

This inequity arises because the definition of “taxi business” within subsection 123(1) of the ETA is restricted to “a business carried on in Canada of transporting passengers by taxi for fares that are regulated”. In many cities and jurisdictions across Canada, although RSCs and RSC Drivers are regulated, their fares often are not. As a result, RSCs Drivers generally do not meet the requirements necessary to be considered a “taxi business” for the purpose of the ETA.
Further, this conclusion based on the current law has been confirmed by the Canada Revenue Agency in a GST/HST Ruling issued to the City of Ottawa dated September 8, 2016 (CRA Case No. 177455).

Consequently, RSC Drivers that are able to remain unregistered for GST/HST as “small suppliers” gain a significant competitive advantage in the market. They are not required to collect GST/HST from their customers, which effectively reduces the total fare that customers are required to pay for their services. Ultimately, this reduction in price discourages consumers from using those suppliers that are required to collect GST/HST, such as taxicabs or other RSC Drivers that are not “small suppliers”. In order for the private transportation industry to remain healthy, competitive and fair, an amendment to the ETA is required.

Although suppliers registered for GST/HST have the ability to claim input tax credits, this does not offset the inequitable application of the ETA. While unregistered “small suppliers” cannot claim input tax credits, the pricing advantage that they enjoy over their competition in the private transportation industry – and in particular, our drivers and members – significantly outweighs the benefits of claiming input tax credits. Moreover, “small suppliers” are free from the considerable administrative burden associated with GST/HST registration.

Accordingly, we are requesting one of two remedies; either:
• the definition of “taxi business” is amended, such that it will generally apply to RSC Drivers carrying on business in Canada; or
• provisions are added to the ETA which require RSCs to collect GST/HST on the fares paid for their Drivers’ services, rather than their affiliated RSC Drivers.

FAIRNESS & EQUITY
Prior to the introduction of the GST in 1990, the Department of Finance published The White Paper: Tax Reform 1987, which lists the five primary objectives of its tax reform proposal: fairness, competitiveness, simplicity, consistency and reliability. It is these five objectives of the GST which necessitate that amendments be made to the ETA in respect of its application to the private transportation industry.
The White Paper provides details on how the introduction of the GST would achieve each of its primary objectives. Specifically:
• Fairness – is to be achieved, in part, “by broadening tax bases through eliminating and reducing selective preferences”.
• Competitiveness – is to be achieved by introducing a tax system with “lower rates and a broader base.” Furthermore, The White Paper describes how “[s]pecial preferences help some taxpayers, but at the cost of higher tax rates that hurt others. As a general principle, the government should refrain from using the tax system to subsidize particular types of investment activity. Such subsidies introduce distortions in economic decisions and inequities among taxpayers. Where incentives remain, they should serve well-defined objectives, and should endeavour not to bias choices among similar types of economic activity.”
• Simplicity – “fewer invidious borders between products taxed differently under the sales tax will contribute to meeting this objective.” Moreover, “[a] tax system with fewer special preferences will also be more straightforward and more readily understood by Canadians” and ultimately, “[a] simpler tax system will ease compliance and reinforce the self-assessment principle that is the foundation of our tax system.”
• Consistency – “it is important that the personal, corporate and sales tax structures be well integrated and internally consistent to assure Canadians that the total tax burden is fairly shared and that the system is economically efficient. Consistency also enhances understanding of the system and facilitates compliance and administration.”
• Reliability – “[t]he basic objective of the tax system is to raise revenues to pay for publicly funded programs. To provide the high standard of services to which the government is committed, the tax system must yield predictable and reliable revenues derived from a fair, broad and secure tax base.”

If the necessary amendments are not made to the ETA so as to require the collection of GST/HST in respect of all transportation services provided by RSCs/RSC Drivers, the five primary objectives of the GST will not be met. As such, we are requesting our proposed amendments as a means of:
• Ensuring that the GST is applied fairly in the private transportation industry by eliminating a selective preference for RSC Drivers;
• Maintaining a competitive private transportation industry, unconstrained by the arbitrary competitive advantage conferred only to RSC Drivers that are “small suppliers”;
• Simplifying the application of the GST to the private transportation industry, for both consumers and suppliers. Consumers will not be forced to seek out “small supplier” RSC Drivers in order to receive the lowest fare. Suppliers will more readily understand and comply with their self-assessment obligations;
• Establishing a consistent application of the GST in the private transportation industry, where the burden of the system is shared equally by all types of suppliers; and
• Ensuring stability of the Federal Government’s GST revenues from the private transportation industry, even as consumers are increasing their reliance on the services offered by RSC Drivers, rather than the services offered by traditional suppliers, such as taxicabs.

AMENDMENT OPTIONS
Amend the Definition of “taxi business”
One possible remedy for achieving a fair, consistent, simple and reliable application of the GST in the private transportation industry, is to amend the definition of “taxi business” in subsection 123(1) of the ETA, such that it will generally apply to RSC Drivers carrying on business in Canada. Following the amendment, RSC Drivers will generally be required to register for GST/HST, regardless of whether they are considered “small suppliers” under section 148 of the ETA. As a result, the GST will be applied consistently to the fares of all types of suppliers in the private transportation industry.
Our recommendation for amending the definition of “taxi business” would be to include a separate reference to RSC Drivers. For example the definition might be amended to read as follows:
“taxi business” means
(a) a business carried on in Canada of transporting passengers by taxi for fares that are regulated under the laws of Canada or a province, or
(b) a business carried on in Canada of transporting passengers by passenger vehicle that is regulated under the laws of Canada, a province, or municipality as a ride-sharing service, private transportation service or other similar service;

The inclusion of a specific reference to RSC Drivers in the definition of “taxi business” is of particular importance in light of the recent decision by Australia’s Federal Court, Uber B.V. v Commissioner of Taxation, [2017] FCA 110, in which Uber argued that its drivers are not “taxis” for the purpose of Australia’s GST Act. Given the similarities between the ETA and Australia’s GST Act, if the ETA is not amended to include an explicit reference to RSC Drivers, it is highly likely that Uber will bring a similar legal challenge in Canada.
Introduce a Simplified Form of GST/HST Registration
An alternative remedy would be to introduce provisions in the ETA which are designed to impose a GST/HST collection obligation on RSCs, rather than RSC Drivers. As many RSCs provide their services through foreign entities (such as Uber B.V. in the Netherlands), the primary challenge will be in compelling these foreign entities to register for, collect and remit GST/HST.

It is our understanding that the government is considering amendments to the ETA which are aimed at imposing a GST/HST collection obligation on foreign-based digital service providers (“Foreign DSPs”). These proposed measures have often been reported in the media as the “Netflix tax”. If the reports are in fact correct, we request that they expressly include RSCs in the proposed amendments.
On our understanding, collection of GST/HST from Foreign DSPs might be accomplished through a simplified form of GST/HST registration. Under this simplified registration, Foreign DSPs would be required to register for GST/HST and, consequently, collect and remit GST/HST in respect of their taxable supplies made in Canada. This would relieve Canadian consumers of their obligation to self-assess GST/HST payable in respect of these foreign-based digital services.

An additional challenge in imposing this simplified registration requirement on RSCs, is that many RSCs have structured their operations in such a manner that creates ambiguity as to whether it is the RSC or the affiliated RSC Driver that is making the supply. For example, Uber Technologies, Inc., provides its services through a subsidiary in the Netherlands (Uber B.V.), which provides drivers with access to its Uber app, thereby allowing the drivers to receive ride requests. Uber B.V. asserts that it merely facilitates the relationship between the Uber driver and the passenger. Once that connection has been established, it is the Uber driver that is supplying the transportation services.

Therefore, to ensure that a simplified registration will be effective in imposing a GST/HST collection obligation on RSCs, we are requesting further amendments to the ETA which would specifically deem that the RSCs, rather than their affiliated RSC Drivers, are supplying the transportation services.
Overall, the effect of a simplified registration will be to shift the administrative burden associated with GST/HST registration from RSC Drivers to the RSCs, while still achieving a fair, consistent, simple and reliable application of the GST to the private transportation industry.
Prohibit RSCs from Initiating Legal Proceedings, Unless Registered for GST/HST
An additional measure, which could be implemented in conjunction with a simplified registration, would be to prohibit foreign RSCs from initiating legal proceedings in Canadian courts unless they are registered for GST/HST.
The incentive for RSCs to register for GST/HST to ensure they can avail themselves of the benefits of Canada’s court system would virtually ensure GST/HST registration and compliance by the RCSs.

For example, the registered trade-marks of RSC and foreign-based digital content and service providers have significant value. If they were unable to commence an action in a Canadian court to enforce their trade-mark rights unless or until they were registered for GST/HST purposes, there would be great incentive upon them to register for and to collect GST/HST.
Similarly, RCSs have been benefitting from the use of Canada’s court system to gain the ability to conduct business in municipalities across Canada. Yet to date, they have not voluntarily registered to comply with their corresponding tax obligations, taking the position that they are not required to do so.

There is precedent for this approach to enforcing registration obligations. In most Canadian provinces, corporations that carry on business in the province are required to be extra provincially licensed or registered in the province. If they fail to do so, such extra-provincial corporations are not allowed to maintain legal actions in respect of contracts made within the province, unless and until the extra-provincial corporation is registered under the province’s Extra-Provincial Corporations Act, Business Corporations Act or other similar statute.

CONCLUSION
The unfair and inconsistent application of the ETA’s “small supplier” registration exception poses a significant threat to the competitiveness of the private transportation industry. Unless amendments to the ETA are made:
• “Small supplier” RSCs and their Drivers will have an arbitrary, but significant pricing advantage in the market;
• Consumers will be forced to seek out “small supplier” RSC Drivers in order to receive the lowest fare; and
• As consumers continue to increase their reliance on the services offered by RSC Drivers, the Federal Government’s GST revenues from the private transportation industry will steadily decline.

Accordingly, we call on the Government of Canada and the Department of Finance to amend the ETA to address this inequitable application of GST/HST between our drivers and members and RSCs and their drivers.
We also request a meeting with you to discuss our concerns. Upon review of this letter, please contact our counsel with respect to this matter – David Douglas Robertson of EY Law LLP at (403) 206-5474 – to coordinate a time for this meeting.

Yours sincerely,

Canadian Taxi Association
Marc André Way
President
455 Coventry Road
Ottawa, ON K1K 2C5

Unifor
Jerry Dias
National President
205 Placer Court
Toronto, ON M2H 3H9

Click here to read full Letter to the Department of Finance


 Taxi Associations call upon Aviva to make new insurance available to cab drivers, report on product sales 

TORONTO, Feb. 1, 2016 /CNW/ – The Toronto Taxi Alliance (TTA) today repeated requests for information it sent to Aviva’s CEO on January 29th.

In a letter to Aviva CEO Greg Sommerville signed by TTA President Gail Souter and Canadian Taxicab Association (CTA) President Marc Andre Way, the TTA and CTA wrote:

“We in the legal, regulated taxi industry are perplexed as to how it is possible for any Ontario insurance company to insure an illegal activity, such as UberX. In fact, one of our city councillors has written Finance Minister Charles Sousa to inquire as to how his ministry could approve an insurance product for an activity which violates the Highway Traffic Act.”

Among the requests the TTA and CTA made of Aviva were:

  • That Aviva agree to release the number of such endorsements actually sold: “As we have been informed by a number of insurance professionals, the fact that a commercial endorsement (for example, the OPCF 6A) is AVAILABLE does not mean any UberX drivers will purchase it.

“We are very concerned that an Aviva announcement that ‘an approved product exists and is available for purchase’ will be misconstrued by politicians to mean ‘20,000 illegal UberX drivers are now insured.’

“The fact that a product is available does not mean that thousands of UberX drivers are going to announce that they are picking up paying passengers, and purchase Aviva insurance with the new endorsement.

“More likely, they will continue to do what they are doing now: carry only a personal policy and refrain from notifying their insurance company they are carrying passengers for compensation. Release of information on the actual number of endorsements purchased will give politicians more accurate information on which to base their debates and decisions.”

  • That when this new hybrid endorsement is actually available, Aviva make it available to licensed, regulated taxi drivers who meet the same conditions being set out for UberX drivers.

“I trust you will agree that everyone – consumers, service providers, elected officials and the insurance industry itself – will be well and fairly served with the release of the above information.”

SOURCE Toronto Taxi Alliance &Canadian Taxi Association

For further information from Toronto Taxi Alliance contact Rita Smith at 647 242 5505 or ritasmith@rogers.com

For further information from Canadian Taxi Association contact Jim Bell, Executive Director of Operations and Member Services by
E-mail: jbell@cantaxi.ca


Canadian Taxi Association warns would-be drivers in Niagara, Ont. of Uber insurance risks

The Canadian Taxi Association (CTA) is warning anyone who is living in the Niagara, Ont. region and thinking of driving for Uber to think twice.

Personal auto insurance does not cover the elevated risks of vehicle damage or personal injury involved in providing commercial car for hire services

“Canadian insurance companies are cracking down on customers who drive for Uber without proper   commercial coverage,” said CTA president Marc Andre Way in a press release on Friday. “Errant drivers are  having their policies voided and could be left completely uninsured.”

The CTA noted that last week, Aviva Canada “cracked down on four Ottawa-based customers who are Uber drivers after having received information from the CTA.” Off-duty taxi drivers have been taking Uber rides to collect licence plate numbers and driver information and providing it to insurance companies, the CTA reported.

Read More


Taxi Association sending Ottawa Uber driver info to insurance companies

The Canadian Taxi Association is battling illegal Uber drivers operating in Ottawa by conducting undercover stings to gather driver information to send to insurance companies — an effort that has led to at least two Ottawa Uber drivers having their insurance cancelled.

So far in Ottawa, the association has collected the licence plates and driver profiles of more than 200 drivers who work for the ride-sharing service, said association president Marc Andre Way, who is also vice-president of Coventry Connections.

“We do that constantly. It’s an ongoing effort where we collect a database of licence plates of those who are driving illegally within our cities,” Way said, adding they’ve been lobbying insurance companies since Uber surfaced in Canada.

Read More


CANADIAN TAXI ASSOCIATION WARNS NIAGARA DRIVERS OF UBER INSURANCE RISKS

NIAGARA, ON, Nov. 6, 2015 – Anyone living in the Niagara region and thinking of driving for Uber should think twice, according a warning from The Canadian Taxi Association (CTA).

“Canadian insurance companies are cracking down on customers who drive for Uber without proper commercial coverage. Errant drivers are having their policies voided and could be left completely uninsured,” said Marc Andre Way, CTA.

Just this week Aviva Canada cracked down on four Ottawa-based customers who are Uber drivers after having received information from the CTA. Off duty taxi drivers have been taking Uber rides to collect licence plate numbers and driver information and providing it to insurance companies.

Personal auto insurance does not cover the elevated risks of vehicle damage or personal injury involved in providing commercial car for hire services. Any claims being made by Uber drivers or their passengers would be denied under personal insurance policies.

The warning comes as Uber continues to recruit Niagara area drivers even though the company cannot legally operate and its application is still only under consideration.

“Regulated taxis are held to higher standards than illegal car for hire services,” explains Marc Andre Way. “We are properly insured, our cars meet all safely checks and our service is accessible to everyone. And, taxi operators are local companies investing in the communities we serve.”


CANADIAN TAXI ASSOCIATION SPEECH TO TORONTO CITY COUNCIL – LICENSING STANDARDS COMMITTEE – September 16, 2015

Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen,

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for the opportunity to speak to you today about this extremely important topic of regulation.

The Canadian Taxi Association represents 100’s of taxi operators from across the country.

Our mission is to develop a respected and vibrant taxi industry that is modernized, customer service centric and meets the needs of Canadians by sharing information and best practices with taxi owners and operators.

Today we are here to discuss regulation. Regulation is the key to creating a level playing field for both Uber and Taxi companies to compete.

The Canadian Taxi Association is here today to advise council that what you do in regulating taxis and Uber in the beautiful city of Toronto, will become the benchmark and set the precedence for regulation across the country.

What you do will affect over 20,000 + full times jobs related directly to the industry across the country in cities where Uber operates and the families these jobs support.

Let’s be honest, Uber doesn’t really want regulation. Just this week they denounced potential regulation put forward by the city of Edmonton. Aside from insurance, the total costs to drivers for cars inspections, background checks, licenses and administration costs was about $700 dollars. Uber said that was too much. That would be too much of a barrier for drivers and would not work for Uber’s business plan.

Uber’s business plan and goal is no regulation of Uber. That would kill the taxi industry and I do not think replacing 20,000 FT jobs that supports our local economies across Canada with PT, Casual or even transitional employees would be good for any economy. As a matter of fact I wish you would do a study on that as part of this regulation process.

The CTA has observed this phenomenon for quite a while and It seems Uber is constantly rewarded for breaking the rules and laws, disrespecting politicians, insurance companies and even their consumers and their drivers by putting them in dangerous situations, while taxi operators are punished through lack of enforcement for following the rules and laws cities stated they had to abide by, laws you said they have to abide by. An example of this is the insurance issue. We know they do not have the proper insurance to protect consumers but yet they are still allowed to operate and this puts public safety at risk and could make the city liable for allowing it to happen.

And now they are working with Intact insurance to create new products and services that will actually cover customers and drivers. This is an admission they don’t have proper coverage, but we all know that. I can tell you this, if they do create new insurance products for Uber drivers at a much cheaper rate, the Canadian Taxi Association will lobby to have those products offered to taxi drivers as well, because aside from the app the service provided on the street by both Uber and taxi drivers is getting people from point A to point B for compensation, so those new insurance products should apply to taxi drivers as well.

A brilliant man once said “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again expecting a different result.” That brilliant man was Albert Einstein.
Uber wants no regulation for them to operate their business as they want too, but we have seen what has happened with deregulation before in the industry in the 30’s, 70’s and today in so many part of the states where Uber is working under almost no regulation and that is the Race to the Bottom. Please don’t do the same thing expecting a different result, because it won’t happen. Please don’t make Albert Einstein role over in his grave.

Thank you.


CANADIAN TAXI ASSOCIATION ANNOUNCES NEW EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS

Jim Bell’s experience and knowledge of Canadian Taxi Industry will help Drive Industry Forward Into 21st Century

OTTAWA, ON, August 18, 2015 – The Canadian Taxi Association (CTA) is proud to announce that it has retained the services of former president of Diamond Taxi in Toronto, Canada as the new Executive Director of Operations and Member Services for the Canadian Taxi Association.
“The CTA is proud to have Jim Bell join our association as Executive Director.” said CTA president Marc Andre Way. “Jim brings a wealth of knowledge to the association. He is a subject matter expert in the areas of regulation, customer service standards, safety and lobbying. He is well connected to the entire industry not, only in Canada, but in North America and globally.” continued CTA president Marc Andre Way. “With over 25 years of experience in the industry Mr. Bell is the perfect person to assist the CTA in achieving its goals and vision. He has witnessed the effects of deregulation, impact of changes in technology including dispatch systems, meter units and the ways in which we hail taxis.”

“I am so happy to be part of something that will see the Canadian Taxi Industry thrive as we aim to provide service standards that truly resonate with a changing demographic and preferences in hailing taxi services across Canada.” said Jim Bell. “Working closely with my colleagues from across Canada, members of the Taxi, Limousine Paratransit Association in the United States and other associations from across the globe, the CTA is poised to revolutionize the industry in the face of illegal bandit operators breaking into the Canadian landscape.”
Bell says he feels like he has seen it all. From the early days when people just hailed taxis on the curb of a street, to the implementation of telephone hailing systems to online and app hailing services of recent years. “It has been an amazing thing to watch this industry grow and change and now I can help companies across Canada, adapt and grow.”

His new job doesn’t come without challenges though. With the increase in bandit taxi operations from companies like Uber who claim they are not a taxi company, Mr. Bell is facing some harsh competition from new systems. “Uber is a company that uses an app to hail cars for hire. Taxi companies do too. When Uber stops breaking the law and conforms to regulations as they claim they want too, then we will have a level playing field where we can all compete. “

About the Canadian Taxi Association
In Canada there are approximately 30,000 taxicabs providing transportation services from coast to coast to coast. The CTA is the only national association dedicated to our industry, the Canadian Taxi Association is committed to a vibrant and respected taxi industry across Canada. We are proud to provide our members a network of programs, services and support that can enhance their ability to effectively and profitably serve their local communities.

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For additional information contact:
Jim Bell, Executive Director of Operations and Member Services
E-mail: jbell@cantaxi.ca

 


REJUVENATED CANADIAN TAXI ASSOCIATION STEPS UP TO FIGHT UBER AND DRIVE FURTHER TAXI MODERNIZATION

CTA Positions as the Voice of Canada’s National Taxi Industry

OTTAWA, ON, July 9, 2015 – With the taxi industry at a crossroads, the Canadian Taxi Association (CTA) is stepping up to provide a unified voice for the nation’s taxi industry in the ongoing national dialogue centred on regulation and transformation with a new mandate, a new look and a new website. Marc Andre Way, owner of Capital Taxi in Ottawa and vice-president of Coventry Connections, has been appointed President of the CTA.
Technology has been a game changer for the industry. The new CTA’s mission is to further advance modernization of the taxi industry by raising standards, improving infrastructure and increasing competitiveness. Its focus is to support its members by providing resources, sharing best practices and identifying opportunities to improve and expand taxicab services from coast to coast.
It will also help members effectively deal with ride-sharing companies like Uber, and UberX, the service that connects riders with unlicensed drivers and uninsured vehicles. The service has been expanding in Canadian cities, but it’s also prompted a backlash. In Vancouver, the entire business has been banned. Montreal’s mayor has said that UberX is illegal, and earlier this week, just days after an Ontario Superior Court judge denied the City of Toronto’s bid to shut down Uber, Mayor John Tory vowed to overhaul Toronto’s entire taxi regime and promised a single bylaw that will cover taxis, limousines and ride-sharing services like Uber.

With the regulatory landscape changing in Toronto and possibly across the country, the CTA will play a crucial role in helping its members navigate those changes.
“The Canadian taxi industry is experiencing unprecedented competition from new business models and global, and often illegal, operators,” explained Marc Andre Way, president of the Canadian Taxi Association. “Canadians want a responsive, trustworthy and convenient service, and today’s successful cab operators need to meet this demand while complying with strict regulations and in often unionized environments. It’s our mission to help them achieve that.”

The Canadian Taxi Association represents independent taxicab operators across Canada. As part of the repositioning, the Canadian Taxi Association worked with Brand Clarity to contact over 200 operators through interviews and surveys across the industry to identify opportunities for providing greater service and value. The research revealed that Canada’s taxi operators are interested in important issues such as improving customer service, adopting and integrating new technology, addressing regulation and licensing matters and fighting increased competition from unregulated global operators.

As part of the new approach, the CTA worked with Brand Clarity to develop a modern new look for the Association, including a new logo and website. The new tagline – Driving Our Industry Forward – helps communicate the CTA’s focus on the future. To learn more, please visit www.cantaxi.ca

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Media enquiries:

Marc Andre Way, President
Phone: 1-844-220-TAXI (8294)
E-mail: maway@cantaxi.ca