Legalization of motorcycle taxis pushed in Senate plenary

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    SEN. Grace Poe has officially endorsed for approval Senate Bill No. 1341 or the Motorcycle-for-Hire Act which will legalize and regulate the operation of motorcycle taxis as public utility vehicles (PUVs).

    Poe, chairwoman of the Senate committee on public services, sponsored Committee Report No. 46 on Tuesday afternoon and stressed the immediate need to regulate motorcycles as legal public transport utilities.

    Poe expressed gratitude to her colleagues for their support as she noted that all senators have been named co-authors of the proposed measure.

    “I am proud to present to the body for its consideration the legalization of motorcycle-for-hire. Isabatas na po natin ang pampublikong motorsiklo (let us pass into law the bill on motorcycle taxis),” she said.

    Poe said the legalization and regulation will help address safety risks raised against registered motorcycles-for-hire and the “colorums” or habal-habal, as well as improve commuter welfare by giving them the option to choose legitimate service providers.

    The bill, which proposes an amendment to Republic Act No. 4136 or the Land Transportation and Tariff Code, defines motorcycles-for-hire as any two-wheeled motor vehicles registered with the Land Transportation Office (LTO) which transports passengers and goods on a for-hire basis, and which may utilize online ride hailing or pre-arranged transportation platforms.

    The measure requires motorcycles-for-hire to secure a certificate of public convenience (CPC) or a special permit from the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB), aside from the usual vehicle and driver registration.

    Poe said that like all other PUVs, drivers will be required to undergo rigorous training, motorcycle-for-hire service providers would be strictly regulated, and only up-to-standards motorcycles will be utilized.

    Data from the LTO show that there are more or less 18.8 million motorcycles comprising 71 percent of the total registered vehicles in the country.

    Records also show that one out of three Filipino households owns a motorcycle and 51 percent of these are being used for livelihood. There are also 134 “habal-habal” terminals in Metro Manila alone.