Council Member Moya applauds For-Hire Vehicles Committee for unanimous vote to advance his driver’s Bill of Rights measure.

CITY HALL, NY — On Tuesday, the City Council’s Committee on For-Hire Vehicles unanimously voted to advance Council Member Francisco Moya’s bill to protect drivers from predatory for-hire vehicle lease, rental or purchase agreements to the full Council.

The legislation, Intro. 1070-a, would allow the Taxi and Limousine Commission authority to require clear and unambiguous disclosure of rules with respect to leasing, rental, lease-to-own and conditional purchases. If enacted, the bill would permit the TLC to establish a document — in effect, a “Driver’s Bill of Rights” — that clearly explains lease, rental or conditional purchase agreements in plain language for prospective for-hire drivers to review before entering into such arrangements.

“I am very proud of this bill as it will provide drivers with the consumer protections that they need — not just to survive in this city but thrive in it,” Council Member Francisco Moya said. “This bill will prevent predatory lessors from overwhelming for-hire drivers with mountains of paperwork that obfuscate bad deals like sub-prime leases. It will allow the TLC to create a Driver’s Bill of Rights that’s in line with our recommendations to provide a clear, plain-language explanation of the lease, rental or conditional purchase agreement. This legislation is centered on protecting drivers at a time when they are in dire financial positions, too often pushing them to grave and tragic decisions. I will continue to work hand-in-hand with the TLC to make sure drivers are protected from predatory dealers.”

Council Member Moya introduced the so-called Driver’s Bill of Rights in response to unscrupulous lessors who issued subprime leases to for-hire drivers. “Those deals are handcuffing drivers to the steering wheels of financial sinkholes,” Council Member Moya said.

“Predatory leasing companies are taking advantage of our city’s for-hire vehicle drivers with unfair prices and hidden fees,” said Jim Conigliaro, Jr, founder of the Independent Drivers Guild, which represents and advocates for more than 70,000 app-based drivers in New York City. “These companies must be stopped. We have been working with Council Member Moya and thank him and his staff for all of their hard work to address our concerns and protect our drivers and victims of predatory leasing practices.”

The ride-hailing company Lyft also expressed its support for the measure.

“We applaud Councilmember Moya for pursuing this important issue,” Lyft said. “Lyft is committed to helping drivers reach their goals, which is why we have long believed in providing drivers with access to rental vehicles at affordable rates – including in New York City. In passing this bill, New York City Council has the opportunity to not only weed out bad actors with predatory For Hire Vehicle leasing practices but also reduce drivers’ expenses and boost their take-home pay.”

The bill will go before the City Council on Thursday.