Limousine Charter & Tour

January 2017

Magazine for the professional limousine, charter and tour industry.

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18 LIMOUSINE, CHARTER & TOUR JANUARY 2017 WWW.LCTMAG.COM A look at people, products, events and milestones in the world of chauffeured and charter bus transportation. FOR MORE NEWS GO TO LCTMAG.COM AND FIND LATE BREAKING E-NEWS AND BLOGS ABOUT THE INDUSTRY. LimoScene 01.17 Post-Election Political Outlook Takes A Trumpian Twist T he incoming Trump Administra- tion and a majority Republican Congress could likely ease regulations while strengthening the overall business climate. For operators and the NLA leadership, the challenge will be to discern which rules should be kept, killed, or changed. The National Limousine Association's lead lobby team outlined the national political picture Nov. 13 during LCT-NLA Show East and later followed up with LCT for an overview of possible regula- tory efforts coming this year, as the world awaits Trump's Inauguration on Jan. 20. Trump's 306-232 Electoral College vic- tory over Hillary Clinton was one of the biggest political upsets in U.S. history, and could likely shake up political agen- das and priorities across many business sectors, including ground transportation. "In general, across the issues, the Trump Administration is expected to be more pro-business, more supportive of small business," said Louie Perry, a part- ner at Cornerstone Government Affairs, the Washington-D.C. lobbying firm that has been retained by the NLA since 2009. "One could argue all the little things that drive businesses crazy — such as over- time rules, employee misclassification, gas guzzler tax, emissions requirements, etc., — a more pro-business Trump Ad- ministration might make it a little easier for small businesses to operate without burdensome regulations." The major political question is how a populist-Republican-business tycoon who campaigned on helping the work- ing class "forgotten man" will view the regulatory need for transportation net- work companies (TNCs), such as Uber and Lyft, which have dominated indus- try agendas for the last several years. The NLA and state and regional industry trade groups are fighting to establish a permanent framework for regulatory fairness on safety, insurance, airport access, and driver background checks among the primary ground transporta- tion sectors, such as TNCs, chauffeured services, and taxicabs. "A Trump Administration likely will be very free market oriented and anti- regulation," Perry and his Cornerstone colleague and vice president Todd Webster told LCT. "But sometimes the issues we have as an industry — where we have a direct competitor competing unfairly with cost advantages — forces us to push regulators to hold our com- petitors to the same standards we are held to," he added. "We want laws enforced equally for us and the competition. There are also lawsuits across the country trying to settle those questions. How the Trump Administration views Uber will deter- mine whether they are easy or hard to work with. Trump's hotel businesses have seen the impact of Airbnb on the hotel market in New York, and the city has cracked down on Airbnb banning short term rentals, making them report their income, not discriminate, and pay taxes. Donald Trump has said repeat- edly on the campaign trail we are a nation of laws. We hope that means he wants to help the livery industry by making sure the laws for all transporta- tion providers are enforced." Agenda Priorities For the NLA and its lobbyists, the first order of business was to reach out to the Trump transition team and look for opportunities to meet with incoming Department of Labor and Department of Transportation officials to present the industry and its regulatory posi- tions. The NLA drafted a position paper and has shared it with the Trump team along with news articles detailing the issues with TNC companies. Aside from TNC-related matters, Perry summarized some NLA priorities and speculated about possible federal changes related to industry concerns: • NLA will encourage the new admin- istration to kill an overtime rule the By Martin Romjue, LCT editor Industry lobbyist says the Trump Administration is expected to be more supportive of small businesses. LCT EAST Edition

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