Minnesota Governor Vetoes Gig Worker Pay Bill

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Technology|Minnesota Governor Vetoes Gig Worker Pay Bill


Gov. Tim Walz said the authorities would person raised costs for ordering an Uber oregon Lyft excessively high, perchance pricing retired Minnesota customers.

Gov. Tim Walz seated astatine  a woody  table, wearing a suit   and reddish  tie, with 1  manus  resting implicit    the other.
Gov. Tim Walz sided with the arguments of Uber and Lyft, who said the minimum wage was excessively precocious for a portion similar Minnesota, and would necessitate them to drastically curtail their ride-sharing businesses successful the state.Credit...Jenn Ackerman for The New York Times

Kellen Browning

By Kellen Browning

Kellen Browning writes astir Uber and the gig system from San Francisco.

May 25, 2023, 6:16 p.m. ET

Gov. Tim Walz of Minnesota connected Thursday vetoed a measure that would person guaranteed a minimum wage and different protections for Uber and Lyft drivers.

“Ride-share drivers merit harmless moving conditions and just wages, and I americium committed to uncovering solutions to these issues that equilibrium the interests of each Minnesotans, drivers and riders alike,” Mr. Walz, a Democrat, wrote successful a missive to the talker of the Minnesota House of Representatives. But helium said that the legislation, which passed the authorities legislature past week, “is not the close measure to execute these goals.”

The measure had been seen arsenic a important triumph for labour advocates, who person been warring for greater benefits for gig drivers crossed the country. Uber and Lyft dainty their drivers arsenic autarkic contractors alternatively than employees, meaning the drivers are liable for their ain expenses and bash not person wellness attraction oregon different benefits. The companies accidental their concern exemplary allows drivers to support the flexibility they want.

The authorities would person required Uber and Lyft to wage their drivers astatine slightest $1.45 per mile they thrust with a passenger, oregon $1.34 per mile extracurricular the Minneapolis-St. Paul area, arsenic good arsenic $0.34 per minute. It besides would person established a reappraisal process letting drivers protestation cases wherever they were deactivated from the platforms.

Mr. Walz sided with the arguments of Uber and Lyft, which said the minimum wage was excessively precocious for a portion similar Minnesota and would necessitate them to drastically curtail their ride-sharing businesses successful the authorities arsenic costs accrued for riders.

Earlier connected Thursday, Uber said it would propulsion retired of Minnesota astatine the opening of August if the measure passed, leaving lone its premium work successful the state’s largest metropolitan region.

“This measure could marque Minnesota 1 of the astir costly states successful the state for thrust share, perchance putting america connected par with the outgo of rides successful New York City and Seattle — cities with dramatically higher costs of surviving than Minnesota,” Mr. Walz wrote successful his letter.

Aside from the veto — his archetypal — Mr. Walz besides issued an enforcement bid establishing a committee to survey the ride-share concern successful Minnesota and urge argumentation changes to guarantee drivers person just compensation.

Uber cheered the quality and said it would enactment a antithetic measure that would connection somewhat little minimum wage and guarantee that drivers were classified arsenic autarkic contractors alternatively than employees successful Minnesota, a longstanding extremity of the institution that it has precocious successful different states.

“We admit the accidental to get this right, and anticipation the legislature rapidly passes a compromise successful February,” said Freddi Goldstein, an Uber spokeswoman.

CJ Macklin, a Lyft spokesman, added that “lawmakers should walk just wage and different protections, but it indispensable beryllium done successful a mode that doesn’t jeopardize the affordability and information of those who trust connected the service.”

State Senator Omar Fateh, an writer of the bill, criticized Mr. Walz’s determination connected Twitter.

“Today, we saw the powerfulness corporations clasp connected our government,” helium wrote. “The combat is not over, and I committedness you I won’t backmost down.”

Kellen Browning is simply a exertion newsman successful San Francisco, wherever helium covers the gig economy, the video crippled manufacture and wide tech news. @kellen_browning

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