Agenda and draft minutes

Licensing & Regulation Committee - Tuesday, 6th September, 2022 6.30 pm

Venue: Walton Suite, WInchester Guildhall

Contact: Nancy Graham, Senior Democratic Services Officer  Tel: 01962 848 235 Email:  ngraham@winchester.gov.uk

Media

Items
No. Item

1.

Apologies and Deputy Members

To record the names of apologies given and Deputy Members who are attending the meeting.

 

Minutes:

Apologies and deputy members were noted as set out above.

2.

Disclosures of Interests

To receive any disclosure of interests from Members and Officers in matters to be discussed.

 

Note:  Councillors are reminded of their obligations to declare disclosable pecuniary interests, personal and/or prejudicial interests in accordance with legislation and the Council’s Code of Conduct.

 

If you require advice, please contact the appropriate Democratic Services Officer, prior to the meeting.

 

Minutes:

There were no disclosures of interest made.

 

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3.

Minutes of the previous meeting held on 7 June 2022 pdf icon PDF 111 KB

Minutes:

RESOLVED:

 

That the minutes of the previous meeting held 7 June 2022 be agreed as a correct record.

 

4.

Public Participation

To receive and note questions asked and statements made from members of the public on issues relating to the responsibility of this Committee.

 

Minutes:

 

Paul Nuth and Greg Blazard (Driving Miss Daisy Ltd) spoke regarding report LR564 as summarised under the relevant minute below.

 

 

5.

Review of Hackney Carriage Fares (LR563) pdf icon PDF 281 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

 

The Licensing Manager (Interim) introduced the report and explained that a request had been received from the Taxi and Private Hire Forum to review hackney carriage fares.  It was proposed that the recommendations as set out in the report be amended to clarify the process for approving any fare increase and members agreed these changes as set out in the resolution below.

 

The Licensing Manager highlighted a correction to paragraph 11.19 of the report to note that the two mile fare for Hart District Council was £8.20 (not £6.80 as stated).

 

The Licensing Manager responded to members’ questions regarding the proposals including the following:

  • the current average price of fuel in Winchester;
  • of the fare review proposals contained as appendix 5 to the report, the pre-consultation survey sent to all licensed hackney carriage and private hire vehicles indicated a first preference for option 4 and second preference for option 2;
  • the impact on the existing taxi trade of the impact of the Covid pandemic in recent years and the current rise in the cost of living meant that at least 50 drivers had already left the profession.

 

Members also recognised the importance of balancing the difficulties facing the taxi trade against the requirement for their customers to be able to afford any increase in fares and ultimately for the availability of the service to be retained.

 

Following debate, the committee agreed that an increase in hackney carriage fares should be implemented, with the majority in favour of option 2 of the proposed fare charts (as contained as appendix 3 to the report).  With regard to the consultation, members emphasised the importance of reaching groups that might not have access to the internet and/or social media and suggested that posters be displayed at key locations, such as well-used taxi ranks.  Members also requested that the consultation commence as soon as possible to enable any increase in fares to be introduced without delay. 

 

 

RESOLVED:

 

1.         That hackney carriage fares should be varied at this time.

 

2.         That it be agreed:

 

(i)        That option 2 of the proposed fare charts produced by the Taxi and Private Hire Forum (as contained as appendix 3 to the report) be put forward for consultation.

(ii)       That the length of time for which public consultation shall take place shall be 21 days.

(iii)      That the list of consultees for the purposes of public consultation be approved, as shown in appendix 5 to the report.

 

3.         After close of the consultation process, that the table of hackney carriage fares together with any representations received be put forward to the next appropriate Cabinet Member Decision Day for consideration and decision.

 

6.

Policy departure for Driving Miss Daisy Ltd (LR564) pdf icon PDF 246 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

 

The Licensing Manager (Interim) introduced the report and circulated photographs of the livery used by Driving Miss Daisy vehicles for members’ information. 

 

Paul Nuth and Greg Blazard from Driving Miss Daisy were in attendance and responded to questions from members as summarised briefly below:

  • the vehicles used had been substantially modified to enable/improve access for different types of wheelchair;
  • the colour scheme had been specifically designed to lower anxiety levels of users with dementia.
  • to their knowledge, no other company in the UK operated the same type of service;
  • all their vehicles were Euro 6 compliant;
  • only five or six vehicles would be moved from Portsmouth to be licensed in the Winchester district and the required mechanical testing would be undertaken in the district.
  • the company did not accept “cold calls” from customers – due to the speciality of the service they offered, vehicles were all pre-booked in advance;

 

The Service Lead – Public Protection confirmed that the impact of the policy departure on the air quality in the Winchester district was minimal. 

 

During debate, members noted the specialised service provided by Driving Miss Daisy Ltd which did not fit comfortably within the available policy for licensed drivers and vehicles.  It was queried whether a separate category of service could be established to reflect this and noted that this might require a change in government legislation.  The Chairperson agreed to investigate further.

 

RESOLVED:

 

That it be agreed to depart from the Council’s Policy for Driving Miss Daisy Ltd’s licensed drivers and vehicles because there are exceptional or compelling reasons to do so.

 

7.

Request for delegated authority to Licensing Sub Committee to determine Licences under Section 115(e) Highways Act 1980 (Tables and Chairs)

The Licensing and Regulation Committee is requested to delegate authority to a Licensing Sub Committee to determine applications for table and chair licences under Section 115(e) Highways Act 1980 (Tables and Chairs) when officers consider it appropriate that the decision is taken by Sub Committee and not under their existing delegated authority

 

Minutes:

The committee noted the proposals for delegation as set out on the agenda sheet.

 

RESOLVED:

 

That authority be delegated to a Licensing Sub-Committee to determine applications for table and chair licences under Section 115(e) Highways Act 1980 (Tables and Chairs) when officers consider it appropriate that the decision is taken by Sub Committee and not under their existing delegated authority.

 

 

 

Registering to speak at this meeting:

The information below relates to the majority of meetings of the council but please note that different rules do apply for registering to speak at meetings of Full Council, Licensing Sub Committees, Planning Committees, Open Forums, the Winchester Sports & Leisure Park (WSLP) Advisory Board and the Standards Hearing and Human Resources Sub Committees and the Appointments Panel. Further information can be obtained using the contact details above.

Members of the public may speak at this meeting, provided they have registered to speak three working days in advance. Please contact Democratic Services via democracy@winchester.gov.uk or (01962) 848 264 to register to speak and for further details - which can also be found on the individual meeting agenda front sheets.

With the exception of the WSLP Advisory Board, members of the public should note that a live audio feed of the meeting will be available from the council's website (www.winchester.gov.uk ) and the video recording will be publicly available shortly after the meeting. For members of the public who are unable to utilise this facility a limited number of seats will be made available at the above named location however attendance must be notified to the council at least 3 working days before the meeting. Please note that priority will be given to those wishing to attend and address the meeting over those wishing to attend and observe.

 

Licensing & Regulation Committee on Tuesday, 6th September, 2022, 6.30 pm{sidenav}{content}