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Agenda Item No 4

 

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

 

Licensing Committee: 12th May 2015

 

Report of the Director of Visible Services and Housing

 

Application to Waive the Vale of Glamorgan Council's Age Policy Guidelines for the Grant of a Hackney Carriage Vehicle Licence, in respect of a Volkswagen Passat, Registration Number CU56 LVK

 

Purpose of the Report

1.         To consider a request by Mr. Shahid Ahmed of Vale Taxi Hire to waive the Vale of Glamorgan Council’s Age Policy Guidelines, in respect of an application for the Grant of a Hackney Carriage Vehicle Licence for a Volkswagen Passat, registration number CU56 LVK.

Recommendations

It is recommended that Members give careful consideration to the following issues, prior to determining the request to waive the Vale of Glamorgan Council's Age Policy Guidelines in respect of vehicle registration number CU56 LVK.

 

Whether they are satisfied that this vehicle is suitable in type, size and design in accordance with Section 47 of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 to be licensed as a Hackney Carriage Vehicle.

 

Any factors Mr. Ahmed wishes to have considered.

 

If Members are satisfied that this vehicle meets the requirements of Section 47 of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 they may resolve to waive the Age Policy Guidelines in respect of this vehicle.

 

Or

 

If Members are minded to refuse the application, give reasons for this decision.

 

The officer recommendation in this matter is that the application to waive the Age Policy Guidelines is refused.

Reason for the Recommendation

The vehicle is now eight years and seven months old, and is three years and seven months outside the Age Policy Guidelines, in relation to Granting a Hackney Carriage Licence.

 

Background

2.         Class 1 is one of two classes of vehicles licensed by the Vale of Glamorgan Council in conjunction with the Age Policy Guidelines. The Age Policy Guidelines are in Section 12 of the Information Pack for Committee Members.

3.         Class 1 vehicles must be under 5 years old to have a licence granted. The date of first registration for the vehicle registration CU56 LVK was 26th October 2006, therefore the vehicle is now eight years and seven months old.

Relevant Issues and Options

4.         Vehicle registration number CU56 LVK was licensed as Hackney Carriage Vehicle number HC138 from 19th July 2013 to 5th March 2015.

5.         On 12th March 2015, a letter was sent to 'Vale Taxi Hire', reminding them that the Hackney Carriage Licence for HC138 had expired on 5th March 2015, and requested the return of the licence plate.   A copy of this letter is attached at Appendix A to this report.

6.         To date, the licence plate has not been returned.

7.         On 26th March 2015, a letter was received from Mr. Ahmed, on behalf of 'Vale Taxi Hire'.  Mr. Ahmed confirmed that the vehicle registration CU56 LVK had not been on the road since 11th February 2015, as there had been significant issues with the engine.  These issues were being repaired, and therefore Mr. Ahmed requested information in relation to licensing the vehicle.  A copy of this letter is attached at Appendix B to this report.

8.         On 26th March 2015, Viv Symonds, Licensing Officer, sent a letter to Mr. Ahmed stating that he must be able to demonstrate that vehicle registration CU56 LVK is in sound mechanical order, prior to processing his application and preparing a report for Committee.  A copy of this letter is attached at Appendix C to this report.

9.         On 8th April 2015, Mr. Ahmed brought his vehicle to the Vale of Glamorgan Council Licensing Department at the Civic Offices, where he demonstrated that he could start the engine.

10.      On 8th April 2015, Mr. Ahmed made application for vehicle registration CU56 LVK to be licensed as a Hackney Carriage Vehicle.  A copy of this application is attached at Appendix D to this report.

11.      On 8th April 2015, Mr. Ahmed also submitted a letter requesting that the Vale of Glamorgan Council's Licensing Committee consider his request for the age policy guidelines to be waived in respect of vehicle registration CU56 LVK.  A copy of this letter is attached at Appendix E to this report.

12.      If Members are minded to approve the waiver of Age Policy Guidelines in respect of the vehicle, it will be presented for testing at the Alps Depot, and a licence will be issued from the date the vehicle receives a satisfactory pass certificate.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

13.      Resources directed to the administration and enforcement of the Taxi Licensing function may be recovered through Taxi Licensing Fees and Charges.

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

14.      None.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

15.      Section 47 of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 states: -

(1) A district council may attach to the grant of a licence of a hackney carriage under the Act of 1847 such conditions as the district council may consider reasonably necessary.

(2) Without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing subsection, a district council may require any hackney carriage licensed by them under the Act of 1847 to be of such design or appearance or bear such distinguishing marks as shall clearly identify it as a hackney carriage.

(3) Any person aggrieved by any conditions attached to such a licence may appeal to a magistrates' court.

Crime and Disorder Implications

16.      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)

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

Corporate/Service Objectives

18.      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

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

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

20.      None.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

21.      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:

Miles Punter - Director of Visible Services and Housing

 

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