Friday, June 14, 2024
Hawai'i Free Press

Current Articles | Archives

Friday, July 13, 2018
Caldwell Proposes Reducing Regulatory Burden on Transportation Providers
By Selected News Articles @ 2:51 AM :: 4727 Views :: Honolulu County, Small Business


by Madeline Fry, Heartland Institute, July 11, 2018

Honolulu, Hawaii Mayor Kirk Caldwell rejected a proposed ordinance that would regulate fares charged by Uber, Lyft, and other ridesharing companies.

The Honolulu City Council approved the ordinance, Bill 35, on June 6, sending the legislation to the mayor to approve or reject. Caldwell vetoed the ordinance on June 17.

The City Council has until July 19 to decide whether to override the veto or allow the rejection to stand.

If six council members vote to override the veto, the ordinance will take effect, putting the City Department of Customer Services in charge of determining price ceilings for fares drivers may charge during high-demand periods of time, known as “surge pricing,” when picking up passengers in Honolulu.

Calls for Price Flexibility

Adam Smith, an associate professor of economics at Johnson & Wales University and a policy advisor for The Heartland Institute, which publishes Budget & Tax News, says government intervention distorts local transportation markets, raising prices and reducing access.

“A lot of things that are done through companies, like transportation, are now done through markets directly,” Smith said. “Having people contracting with people, you obviously need to allow the price to move around to be able to let those markets clear. When you don’t, or you put an arbitrary cap on price, then you’re going to have a shortage of that market. Fewer suppliers are going to meet demand, and they’re going to not meet demand in times when you most want it.”

Consumers First

Keli’i Akina, president of the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii, says market principles put people in the driver’s seat.

“When prices rise, more ride-hailing drivers are incentivized to help customers,” Akina said. “This market mechanism helps give more power to consumers. Customers can already see the higher price beforehand, and they can decide to accept or decline the ride. In this way, the consumer is king.”

“Putting a cap on surge pricing would cut off choices for consumers,” Akina said. “The high price is a signal to ride-hailing drivers that their services are urgently needed. This can help inspire more drivers onto the road to help customers.”

Predicts Supply Reduction

If the City Council overrides the veto and the ordinance takes effect, the supply of transportation in the city will decrease, Smith says.

“My prediction would be that there will be fewer rides available,” Smith said. “They think they’re just going to reduce the price but keep the quantity the same, but that’s not how the market works. You’re also going to reduce the amount of suppliers available. I think this is just going to be a reduction of mass transportation in Honolulu.”

Suggests Regulatory Reduction

Instead of making more regulations, the Honolulu City Council should consider reducing the regulatory burden on transportation providers, Akina says.

“Instead of putting more restrictions on ride-hailing customers, Hawaii should explore ways to relieve taxi drivers of over-burdensome regulations,” Akina said.


CB: Leave The Uber-Taxi Debate To The Consumer


TEXT "follow HawaiiFreePress" to 40404

Register to Vote


Aloha Pregnancy Care Center


Antonio Gramsci Reading List

A Place for Women in Waipio

Ballotpedia Hawaii

Broken Trust

Build More Hawaiian Homes Working Group

Christian Homeschoolers of Hawaii

Cliff Slater's Second Opinion

DVids Hawaii


Fix Oahu!

Frontline: The Fixers

Genetic Literacy Project

Grassroot Institute

Hawaii Aquarium Fish Report

Hawaii Aviation Preservation Society

Hawaii Catholic TV

Hawaii Christian Coalition

Hawaii Cigar Association

Hawaii ConCon Info

Hawaii Debt Clock

Hawaii Defense Foundation

Hawaii Family Forum

Hawaii Farmers and Ranchers United

Hawaii Farmer's Daughter

Hawaii Federation of Republican Women

Hawaii History Blog

Hawaii Jihadi Trial

Hawaii Legal News

Hawaii Legal Short-Term Rental Alliance

Hawaii Matters

Hawaii Military History

Hawaii's Partnership for Appropriate & Compassionate Care

Hawaii Public Charter School Network

Hawaii Rifle Association

Hawaii Shippers Council

Hawaii Together


Hiram Fong Papers

Homeschool Legal Defense Hawaii

Honolulu Navy League

Honolulu Traffic

House Minority Blog

Imua TMT

Inouye-Kwock, NYT 1992

Inside the Nature Conservancy

Inverse Condemnation

July 4 in Hawaii

Land and Power in Hawaii

Lessons in Firearm Education

Lingle Years

Managed Care Matters -- Hawaii

Missile Defense Advocacy

MIS Veterans Hawaii

NAMI Hawaii

National Parents Org Hawaii

NFIB Hawaii News

NRA-ILA Hawaii


OHA Lies

Opt Out Today

Patients Rights Council Hawaii

Practical Policy Institute of Hawaii

Pritchett Cartoons

Pro-GMO Hawaii

Rental by Owner Awareness Assn

Research Institute for Hawaii USA

Rick Hamada Show

RJ Rummel

School Choice in Hawaii

Talking Tax

Tax Foundation of Hawaii

The Real Hanabusa

Time Out Honolulu

Trustee Akina KWO Columns

West Maui Taxpayers Association

What Natalie Thinks

Whole Life Hawaii