Regulations

Two New Jersey Bills Could Help Limo Industry

Tom Halligan
Posted on January 20, 2017

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (Photo via Flickr user Gage Skidmore)
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (Photo via Flickr user Gage Skidmore)
PRINCETON, N.J. — Gearing up for a new year of regulatory action,  the Limousine Association of New Jersey (LANJ) held its general membership meeting Jan. 16 updating members on 2017 industry-related legislation.

LANJ President Jason Sharenow (Broadway Limousine) and Pete Corelli, (Lakeview Custom Coach), both members of the LANJ legislative committee, explained two transportation bills sitting on the Governor’s desk and another fight brewing with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

LANJ Legislative Committee member Pete Corelli reinforced to members that their support helped the association craft two bills that better serve the industry. Here Corelli is seen raising funds during a LANJ meeting/auction in 2016. (LCT file photo)
LANJ Legislative Committee member Pete Corelli reinforced to members that their support helped the association craft two bills that better serve the industry. Here Corelli is seen raising funds during a LANJ meeting/auction in 2016. (LCT file photo)
The long battle with transportation network companies (TNCs) has come down to a bill sitting on Governor Chris Christie’s desk, the outcome of which is “up in the air,” Sharenow told members. The bill, which will regulate TNCs statewide, contains new rules and criminal background checks — but excludes mandatory driver fingerprinting, which LANJ and taxi associations had lobbied hard to include in the bill.

“Fingerprinting is the gold standard that’s used in New York City, why should New Jersey be exposed to anything less than that?” Sharenow asked. 

Although LANJ is pleased TNCs will finally have to obey stricter regulations, Sharenow said the group has been “aggressive in keeping the pressure up and fingerprinting does have bipartisan support in the Senate and Assembly.” He hopes the state attorney general will acknowledge fingerprinting is the true gold standard for legitimate background checks and not relent to the TNCs' claim of bias and discrimination.

Another bill waiting to be signed into law is a repeal of the 7% state sales and use tax on limousine company services. The sales tax — which taxis and TNCs do not have to pay — was cited as unfair by LANJ, supported by the state legislature as burdensome, and is expected to be repealed by the governor.

Regarding another looming battle, Corelli told members the word is out that the port authority is kicking around a proposal to implement a pick-up fee at Newark Liberty International Airport.

Corelli said the legislative committee, which includes Jon Epstein of Royal Coachman, is monitoring any potential fee for the industry. He reiterated: If not for the financial support of LANJ members, the two bills sitting on the governor’s desk would not have come about.

“We didn’t just tag along on these bills; we created these bills working with the taxi association and lobbying the legislature, and that's because members supported the PAC and we need you to continue supporting our legislative efforts,” he added.

Related Topics: Jason Sharenow, Jon Epstein, LANJ, limo associations, Limousine Association of New Jersey, new jersey, New Jersey operators, Pete Corelli, state regulations, TNCs

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