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Agenda Item No

 

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

 

Licensing Committee: 7th February 2012

 

Report of the Director of Legal, Public Protection and Housing Services

 

Hackney Carriage & Private Hire Vehicles Additional Certification Requirements for Modified Vehicles

 

Purpose of the Report

1.             This Report is to consider Mr Christopher Mort's request to allow him more time to obtain satisfactory V5 Documents in respect of the Private Hire Vehicles attached to this Report at Appendix A .

Recommendations

That Members approve the request to allow more time for those vehicles to be tested and set a final date when all satisfactory documentation in relation to the vehicles suitability and safety must be received by the Licensing Section.  

Reason for the Recommendations

To improve compliance with section 48 of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976.

In order for the Licensing Authority to be satisfied that the standard of work undertaken during the modification of the vehicle meets current safety legislation and standards.

Background

2.             As Members will be aware, a report was presented to this Committee in September 2011 in relation to vehicles that had been modified following the first registration date. A copy of that report is attached as Appendix B to this Report.

3.             Following the consideration of the report Committee resolved the following;

 

(1)       T H A T the proposal that vehicle safety certification be provided to the Licensing Authority by proprietors of Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Vehicles which had been modified or converted following manufacture be approved.

 

(2)       T H A T officers be requested to ensure proprietors are provided with a reasonable amount of time to implement condition (1) above.

 

4.             Following that Committee Mr Mort was sent a letter advising him of the Committee's resolution and requiring that satisfactory evidence in relation to the suitability of each vehicle affected be presented to the Licensing Section when application for the renewal of each vehicle was received. A copy of that letter is attached to this Report at Appendix C.

5.             On December 7th 2011 Mr Mort wrote to the Licensing Section asking that more time be allowed for the production of satisfactory certification in respect of five vehicles. A copy of that letter is attached to this Report at Appendix D.

6.             In December 2011 following the renewal of the Private Hire Vehicle Licence in respect of a Ford Transit MX55HDK Licence Number PH212 a condition was placed on that Licence that satisfactory certification is received in respect of this vehicle by 29th February 2012. A copy of that Licence is attached to this Report at Appendix E.

7.             In January 2012 following the renewal of the Private Hire Vehicle Licence in respect of a Ford Transit T627 HKO Licence Number PH117 a condition was placed on that Licence that satisfactory certification is received in respect of this vehicle by 29th February 2012. A copy of that Licence is attached to this Report at Appendix F.

8.             Mr Mort then sent three written requests dated 12th January 2012, 18th January 2012 and 19th January 2012 asking that the matter be brought back before the Licensing Committee. Copies of those letters are attached to this Report at Appendix G.

9.             Mr Mort will have been provided with in excess of 5 months to produce suitable certification since the Committee's resolution in relation to this matter.

Relevant Issues and Options

10.        Where a vehicle has had modifications it is imperative that the Local Authority receives confirmation that the modifications have been carried out to a safe standard prior to issuing a licence for the vehicle.

11.        Where the above certificates are not available due to the modifications being undertaken following the sale of the vehicle, proprietors will be required to undertake a Voluntary Standard Single Vehicle Approval with a VOSA inspector. 

12.        The VOSA inspector, upon inspection, will ensure compliance with construction and use regulations and if satisfied that the modification has been undertaken safely will issue a Letter of Compliance.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment and Climate Change, if appropriate)

13.        None.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

14.        Section 48 of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 states: 

(1) subject to the provisions of this Part of this Act, a district council may on the receipt of an application from the proprietor of any vehicle for the grant in respect of such vehicle of a licence to use the vehicle as a private hire vehicle, grant in respect thereof a vehicle licence:

 

Provided that a district council shall not grant such a licence unless they are satisfied –

 

that the vehicle is –

 

suitable in type, size and design for use as a private hire vehicle;

not of such design and appearance as to lead any person to believe that the vehicle is a hackney carriage;

in a suitable mechanical condition;

safe; and comfortable;…”

Crime and Disorder Implications

15.        The Council has a statutory duty to regulate licensing activities

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

16.        The Council is obliged to licence all drivers and vehicles on an equitable basis.

Corporate/Service Objectives

17.        To protect the health and safety of the community by ensuring businesses meet legislative requirements, controlling infectious diseases, encouraging responsible dog ownership, controlling pests and regulating animal health and welfare.  To maintain a fair and equitable trading environment.

Policy Framework and Budget

18.        The proposals in this Report are in accordance with the policy on Framework and Budget.

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

19.        None

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

20.        Housing and Public Protection

Background Papers

21.        None

Contact Officer

Kate Thompson, Principal Regulatory Services Officer, 01446 709105

Officers Consulted

None

Responsible Officer:

Peter H Evans, Director of Legal, Public Protection and Housing Services

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