The Government foresees grant authorizations for circulate on urban roads only to those VTC (rental vehicles with driver) with a license domiciled in Catalonia and with a permanently assigned vehicle, as well as fine between 2,001 and 6,000 euros and immobilize the vehicle to those outside the community.
This is stated in the draft decree law of urgent measures to regulate this type of vehicle, to which Efe has had access, which the Government wants to approve with a valid for two years, extendable for another two, in the hope that, when the legal doubts on this issue are dispelled, a broader law is prepared that regulates aspects that cannot be dealt with by decree.
The draft of the decree, which must regulate the urban activity of the VTC and that the Executive wants to have ready for before the end of July, does not fix the desired ratio of 1 VTC for every 30 taxis that taxi drivers demand, but it does provide that new licenses cannot be issued and that these cannot be transmitted when the authorization is to circulate within cities.
6 month notice
“Urban vehicle rental authorizations with driver they are not communicable except in the cases, in case of ownership by natural persons, death, retirement or incapacity of its owner, in favor of their forced heirs, “says the draft.
In order to operate these vehicles in urban area, In addition, you must “be the holder of a state-wide VTC rental authorization domiciled in Catalonia, with a vehicle permanently assigned with a minimum advance notice of 6 months regarding the entry into force of this decree,” the text indicates.
In practice, this means preventing VTCs from other communities from operating (which taxi drivers denounce is happening in places like El Prat Airport) and stabilizing existing licenses in Catalonia, a total of 3,066, although the Government figures in 1,455 really active licenses. In addition, only half correspond to platforms such as Cabify either Uber —both in the spotlight of the taxi sector–, and the rest are traditionally used for activities such as weddings or funerals.
the text too tightens the sanctioning regime, with penalties that can reach, in the most serious cases, amounts between 4,001 and 6,000 euros, and enables the security forces to immobilize vehicles immediately when they detect some very serious infractions.
Other requirements indicated in the draft had already been advanced by the Government: the price of the liability insurance that VTC drivers and taxi drivers must pay; VTC drivers are required to have a driving license for more than a year; each VTC license must be associated with a specific vehicle; and the door is opened for local entities such as the Barcelona Metropolitan Area (AMB) impose specific formations and set mandatory schedules.
In addition, the decree replicates most of the conditions established in another regional regulation (which would decay automatically), such as the prohibition of parking on public roads or pick up customers directly from the street, as well as the mandatory 15-minute wait for customers requesting a VTC or the prohibition to use geolocation before the service.
Elite Taxi has requested an “urgent” meeting with the Government to give them explanations about the new decree that prepares to regulate VTC urban routes. The entity’s spokesman, Tito Álvarez, who has considered “a lack of respect” having found out about the issue through the media, has warned that “if the line of the decree law is what is being said and there is no restriction or quantitative limitation” of the VTC, they will go out “and very soon” .
Álvarez has demanded the meeting “for this very week”, and has warned that if it does not take place, “people are going to take to the streets”: “We will plant ourselves on the Gran Via”. “Here we are not going to allow what is happening in Madrid in any way,” said the spokesman for the formation.