California's Gig Law Comes For the Scooters, Destroys Independent "Juicers"

This July 3, 2018, photo shows scooters by Lime in Paris. Uber is getting into the scooter-rental business. The ride-hailing company said Monday, July 9, that it is investing in Lime, a startup based in San Mateo, California. (AP Photo/Michel Euler)

California’s “gig economy” law – AB5 – continues to have disastrous consequences across the state.

The list of jobs affected or outright destroyed is huge and growing every day. The wedding industry is collapsing. Festivals are closing. Theaters and music venues are closing. A nursing shortage is now upon us because qualified nurses can no longer pick up extra side-jobs in areas like hospice care.

The law has even killed Christmas…mall Santas can no longer contract their services.

The bill’s author, Lorena Gonzalez (CA-80) has not only refused to hear the plight of her fellow Californians as they suddenly struggle to pay their bills, she has stubbornly dug in, insulting anyone who dares to tell her this thing was a bad idea from the start. Her cruelty and grossly unprofessional behavior has made her laser-focused target for activists looking to remove any and every representative who voted for this job killer.

Every day brings us news of more jobs being destroyed and today is no different.

The electric scooter company Lime has announced they will no longer be using independent contractors to “juice” their scooters. The popular city scooters require regular charges, but because they can be left and picked up almost anywhere in a given city, it’s a difficult task for a small group of employees. Entrepreneurial residents could sign up to be “juicers” (kind of like Uber for scooter charging) and get paid for volume. That was a huge incentive for anyone hungry enough to go out and collect as many charges as possible. It was a great business model for Lime. And sometimes it was literally for the hungry. Many of California’s homeless used “juicer” jobs as a way to earn cash legitimately and go buy food or other necessities.

Now, thanks to one woman and her powerful union backers those people no longer have jobs. All in the name of “saving” jobs.

Given the climate of retribution in Sacramento, many companies don’t wish to raise the ire of women like Gonzalez. Lime’s press release regarding the destruction of their “juicer” program was diplomatic but the results are no less tragic. If you want to “juice” for lime you have to become a small business.

As the global leader in micromobility, we’ve learned a lot from the 120+ unique cities we serve around the world. From operational improvements to product enhancements to charging partnerships, we continue to adapt our business to meet the growing demand for micromobility and best serve our communities. Due to recent changes in California state law and Lime’s evolving business needs, we are retiring our California Juicer program and will shift to partnering with companies that provide logistics services to charge and deploy our scooters.

Lime believes in the power of small business ecosystems to help communities thrive. And that’s why we’re partnering with both small business logistic providers and larger companies around the state. We hope our former Juicers will take advantage of opportunities to work directly with top-tier logistics companies or start their own logistics provider businesses.

“We are deeply grateful to the Juicer community and are eager to foster opportunities for them to work with these logistics partners or leverage their entrepreneurial talents to start their own logistics companies,” said Wayne Ting, Global Head of Operations & Strategy for Lime.

Yup. That homeless guy in the tent just off the 405 onramp now needs to become his own business entity in order to “juice” scooters.

Welcome to California, where dreams do come true as long as your dream is to have all your dreams crushed.

Kira Davis
Kira is a freelance writer and Editor-at-large for RedState. She has appeared on Fox News, OANN, The Blaze and The Dr. Phil Show. Kira is also a regular guest host at KABC radio in Los Angeles. Her podcasts"Just Listen to Yourself" and "Smart Girl Politics" are heard by tens of thousands of listeners across the country and the globe. Kira lives in Southern California with her husband and two children. She is a dog person but has been known to tolerate cats from time to time.
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