Agenda Item No. 6
The Vale of Glamorgan Council
Licensing Committee: 30th September, 2014
Report of the Director of Development Services
Proposal for a Taxi Rank to be Appointed in Cowbridge
Purpose of the Report
1. To consider a request from members of the Licensed Taxi Trade for a Taxi Rank to be appointed in Cowbridge Town Centre.
The Officer recommendation in respect of this matter is that a rank is not provided at this time.
Reasons for the Recommendation
Officers can provide no evidence of the need for a Taxi Rank in the Cowbridge area.
Officer are aware that only 2 Hackney Carriages are working in that area on a semi regular basis and therefore it is not envisaged that a Taxi Rank would be fully utilised.
Officers are also mindful of the cost of providing a Taxi Rank at this time of financial restraint.
2. Section 63 of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 and The Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984 allow the Local Authority to appoint Hackney Carriage Stands.
3. The process for establishing or amending stands is as follows;
· The consent of the Highways Authority should be obtained
· Notice must be given to the Chief Officer of Police
· A Notice stating the Authority's intention to appoint a taxi rank must be published in a local newspaper
· Any representations in respect of the proposal must be taken into consideration
4. The Borough of Vale of Glamorgan Byelaws 1978 record that there was previously a Taxi Rank in Cowbridge, located on High Street, 55 meters to the east of the Town Hall.
Relevant Issues and Options
5. On 30th June 2014 Licensing received a request from Mrs Annette Lewis, proprietor of JD Cars that consideration be given to the placement of a Taxi Rank in Cowbridge. A copy of this message is attached at Appendix A to this Report.
6. Also on 30th June 2014 the Head of Service, Public Protection received an email from Cllr Jeffrey James who forwarded a similar enquiry from John Lewis of JD Cars. A copy of this message is attached at Appendix B to this Report.
7. Licensing have sought the views of; Highways, Ward Members, Cowbridge Town Council and South Wales Police.
8. A response from the Traffic Management Department was received on 26th August 2014. A copy of this message is attached at Appendix C to this Report.
9. In subsequent discussions with Steven Arthur, Principal Engineer at Traffic Management, the following points in relation to the possible appointment of a Taxi Rank ,were noted;
The estimated cost of the processing, advertising and implementation would be in the region of £5000.
Funding for the project would be identified by Traffic Management.
The project would be placed on a waiting list for implementation. It is likely that the Rank would not be in place for some considerable time as it does not involve road safety issues and would, therefore, be considered low priority.
10. Licensing Officers estimate that there are no more than two or three Vale of Glamorgan Hackney Carriages regularly working in Cowbridge.
Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)
11. The cost of providing a rank will fall within the Highways budget.
Sustainability and Climate Change Implications
Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)
13. Section 63 of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 states;
(1) For the purposes of their functions under the Act of 1847, a district council may from time to time appoint stands for hackney carriages for the whole or any part of a day in any highway in the district which is maintainable at the public expense and, with the consent of the owner, on any land in the district which does not form part of a highway so maintainable and may from time to time vary the number of hackney carriages permitted to be at each stand.
(2) Before appointing any stand for hackney carriages or varying the number of hackney carriages to be at each stand in exercise of the powers of this section, a district council shall give notice to the chief officer of police for the police area in which the stand is situated and shall also give public notice of the proposal by advertisement in at least one local newspaper circulating in the district and shall take into consideration any objections or representations in respect of such proposal which may be made to them in writing within twenty-eight days of the first publication of such notice.
(3) Nothing in this section shall empower a district council to appoint any such stand-
(a) so as unreasonably to prevent access to any premises;
(b) so as to impede the use of any points authorised to be used in connection with a road service licence granted under section 134 of the Road Traffic Act 1960, or permit granted under section 30 of the Transport Act 1968, as points for the taking up or setting down of passengers, or in such a position as to interfere unreasonably with access to any station or depot of any passenger road transport operators, except with the consent of those operators;
(c) on any highway except with the consent of the highway authority;
And in deciding the position of stands a district council shall have regard to the position of any bus stops for the time being in use.
(4) Any hackney carriage byelaws for fixing stands for hackney carriages which were made by a district council before the date when this section comes into force in the area of the council and are in force immediately before that date shall cease to have effect, but any stands fixed by such byelaws shall be deemed to have been appointed under this section.
(5) The power to appoint stands for hackney carriages under subsection (1) of this section shall include power to revoke such appointment and to alter any stand so appointed and the expressions "appointing" and "appoint" in subsections (2) and (3) of this section shall be construed accordingly.
Crime and Disorder Implications
14. 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)
15. The Council is obliged to apply its licensing conditions on an equitable basis in the case of all applications.
16. 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
17. This is a matter for decision by the Licensing Committee.
Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)
Relevant Scrutiny Committee
19. Housing and Public Protection
Amanda Ewington. Licensing Team Leader 01446 709782
Richard Price, Lawyer, Legal Services 01446 709409
D R Thomas,
Director of Development Services