Single Business License Bill for Transportation Network Company Drivers Signed By Governor
SACRAMENTO – Today, Governor Brown signed Senate Bill 182, introduced by Senator Steven Bradford (D-Gardena). SB 182 allows Californians who drive for transportation network companies (TNC) to obtain a single local business license instead of multiple licenses from each local jurisdiction.
“SB 182 protects working class Californians from fees and costs that can dramatically impact their ability to do business,” said Senator Bradford. “This bill reduces costs for many who are part-time workers and encourages the creation of small businesses.”
SB 182 specifically prohibits local governments from requiring a TNC driver to obtain more than one business license. Currently, many independent contractors are not aware that they are required to obtain a business license in each jurisdiction where they do business. Drivers often travel across multiple municipalities and can unknowingly be exposed to hundreds of dollars of business license fees. SB 182 will provide the necessary clarity regarding business licenses for the more than 200,000 active TNC drivers operating in California.
“SB 182 solves a real problem. I drive passengers through at least 15 different cities in the Bay Area each week,” said Lyft driver Mimi Fan. “If I had to pay for a separate business license in every city, I couldn’t afford to drive.”
The current licensing model exposes working class Californians, who largely use these platforms on a part-time basis, susceptible to fines for violating existing law. However, SB 182 not only clarifies the business licensing requirements for TNC’s, it also makes it easier to enforce the law.
"SB 182 ensures the state's business license law is modernized to meet the realities of the digital age and encourage the continued availability of 21st Century work opportunities,” said Robert Callahan of the Internet Association. “Internet-enabled ridesharing allows Californians to earn money in their free time regardless of where they happen to be in the state and outdated business license laws put this essential economic lifeline at risk."
Additionally, in some jurisdictions drivers who have registered for a business license have had their personal information posted online. For independent contractors like TNC drivers who do not have a physical business location, this means publishing their name and home address, invading their privacy and raising safety concerns. SB 182 will also protect contractors from this threat to their privacy.
Senator Bradford represents the Los Angeles County communities of Carson, Compton, Gardena, Harbor City, Hawthorne, Inglewood, Lawndale, Lennox, San Pedro, Watts, Willowbrook, and Wilmington.