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Agenda Item No 6

 

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

 

Licensing Committee: 21st May 2013

 

Report of the Director of Development Services

 

Guidelines for the Revocation of a Hackney Carriage / Private Hire Driver’s Licence

 

Purpose of the Report

1.             To adopt guidelines for the revocation of a Hackney Carriage / Private Hire Drivers Licence.

Recommendation

It is recommended that the guidelines for the revocation of a Hackney Carriage / Private Hire Driver’s Licence be adopted.

Reason for the Recommendation

To enable adoption of the guidelines.

 

Background

2.             At the meeting of the Licensing Committee on 8th January 2013, Members requested that Officers compile guidelines to assist them when considering the revocation of a Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Vehicle Driver’s Licences.

Relevant Issues and Options

3.             The guidelines will assist the Licensing Authority when determining whether or not an existing licence holder continues to be a fit and proper person to continue to hold a Hackney Carriage / Private Hire Drivers Licence.

4.             The guidelines have been written in accordance with the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 which allows for consideration of an individuals continued fitness and propriety. A copy of the guidelines is attached at Appendix A to this report.

5.             The aim of the guidelines is to ensure public safety.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

6.             None.

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

7.             None.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

8.             There is no judicially approved test of fitness and propriety, and accordingly, a number of local tests have been developed throughout Wales and England.  These tend to be based on a test similar to the following:

“Would you, as a Member of the Licensing Committee, allow your son or daughter, spouse or partner, mother or father, grandson or granddaughter or any other person for whom you care, to get into the vehicle with this person alone?”

If the answer to this question (or a similar test) is an unqualified "Yes", then the test is probably satisfied.  If there are any doubts in the minds of those who make the decision, then further consideration should be given as to whether this person is a fit and proper person to hold such licences.

9.             Section 61 of The Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 states;

Notwithstanding anything in the Act of 1847 or in this Part of this Act, a district council  may suspend or revoke or (on application therefore under section 46 of the Act of 1847 or section 51 of this Act, as the case may be) refuse to renew the licence of a driver of a hackney carriage or private hire vehicle on any of the following grounds-

·               that he has since the grant of the licence-

·               been convicted of an offence involving dishonesty, indecency or violence; or

·               been convicted of an offence under or has failed to comply with the provisions of the Act of 1847 or this part of this Act; or

·               any other reasonable cause.

10.        Section 61 (3) of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 provides

Any driver aggrieved by a decision of a district council under this section may appeal to a magistrates' court.

Crime and Disorder Implications

11.        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.  There are no crime and disorder implications arising from this Report.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

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

Corporate/Service Objectives

13.        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

14.        This is a matter for decision by the Licensing Committee.

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

15.        None as this report relates to the whole of the Vale of Glamorgan.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

16.        Housing and Public Protection.

Background Papers

None.

Contact Officer

Amanda Ewington. Licensing Team Leader 01446 709782

Officers Consulted

Richard Price, Lawyer, Legal Services 01446 709409

Responsible Officer:

Rob Thomas, Director of Development Services.

 

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