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Agenda Item No

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

 

Licensing Committee 6th November 2012

 

Report of the Director of Development Services

 

Application for approval as an Authorised Hackney Carriage Meter Tester – GPC Computer Software Ltd.

 

Purpose of the Report

1.            To consider an application from GPC Computer Software Ltd, Cheadle Royal Business Park, Oakfield Road, Cheadle, Cheshire, SK8 3GX for approval to test Hackney Carriage Meters in the Vale of Glamorgan.

Recommendation

That the application by GPC Computer Software Ltd to calibrate and test meters for Hackney Carriages within the Vale of Glamorgan be approved.

Reason for the Recommendation

To provide Hackney Carriage Vehicle proprietors in the Vale of Glamorgan with greater choice of approved meter testers.

Background

2.            Vale of Glamorgan Conditions for Hackney Carriages state; The proprietor shall produce annually to the Licensing Authority a certificate issued by a meter installer approved by the Licensing Authority stating that the meter is accurate and contains only the current Vale of Glamorgan Hackney Carriage tariff.

3.            There are currently four companies approved to issue Hackney Carriage meter certificates for vehicles licensed by the Vale of Glamorgan.

Relevant Issues and Options

4.            On 27th September 2012 the Licensing Section received an application from GPC Computer Software Ltd to be authorised by the Vale of Glamorgan Council to test meters and issue meter certificates for Hackney Carriages licensed by this authority. A copy of the application is attached at Appendix A to this Report.

5.            The meter tests will be carried out by Peter Renwick at 101 Bridgend Road, Aberkenfig, Bridgend, CF32 9AP, on behalf of GPC Computer Software Ltd.

6.            Mr Renwick has been authorised by GPC Computer Software Ltd to test and calibrate Hackney Carriage meters. A copy of his authorisation is attached at Appendix B to this report.

7.            The type of Hackney Carriage meter that Mr Renwick has applied to calibrate is relatively new to the market, and is designed to be used in conjunction with a Private Hire Operator’s computerised vehicle dispatch system. For members of the trade who wish to fit such a meter in their vehicles it is essential that an authorised tester is within a convenient distance so that vehicle proprietors can obtain and produce the necessary calibration certificate when required to do so by this Authority. 

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

8.            Resources directed to the administration and determination of Taxi Licences may be recovered through Taxi Licensing Fees and Charges.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

9.            Section 65 (1) of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 states:

10.       A district council may fix the rates or fares within the district as well as for time and distance, and all other charges in connection with the hire of a vehicle or with the arrangements for the hire of a vehicle; to be paid in respect of the hire of hackney carriages by means of a table (hereafter in this section referred to as a "table of fares") made or varied in accordance with the provisions of this section.

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

11.       None

Crime and Disorder Implications

12.       Under Section 17 of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 the Council has a statutory duty to consider crime, disorder and antisocial behaviour implications whilst regulating licensing activities.  The Licensing Authority is committed to reducing crime, disorder and anti social behaviour across the Vale of Glamorgan.  Reducing crime and the fear of crime is important to the community, especially vulnerable members of the community such as the very young and elderly.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

13.       The Council is obliged to apply its Licensing conditions on an equitable basis in the case of all applications.

Corporate/Service Objectives

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

Policy Framework and Budget

15.       The proposals in this report are in accordance with the Policy Framework and Budget.

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

16.       Not applicable.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

17.       Housing and Public Protection.

Background Papers

None.

Contact Officer

Alun Billinghurst, Head of Public Protection

Officers Consulted

None

Responsible Officer:

Rob Thomas, Director of Development Services.

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