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Shirehall
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Shrewsbury
Shropshire
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Agenda and draft minutes

Strategic Licensing Committee
Tuesday, 20th November, 2018 10.00 am

Venue: Shrewsbury Room - Shirehall

Contact: Shelley Davies  Committee Officer

Items
No. Item

32.

Apologies

To receive apolgies for absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Dean Carroll, Rob Gittins, Elliot Lynch, Harry Taylor and Robert Tindall.

33.

Minutes of Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 94 KB

To approve the minutes of the previous meeting as a true record (Minutes to follow).

Minutes:

RESOLVED:

 

That the Minutes of the meeting held on 3rd October 2018 be approved as a correct record.

34.

Public Question Time

To receive any public questions or petitions from the public, notice of which has been given in accordance with Procedure Rule 14.  The deadline for this meeting is 10.00 am on Monday 19th November 2018.

 

Minutes:

The Chairman reported that two public questions had been received.

 

Question 1 - received from Mark Higgins:

 

How does the proposal address that the vast majority of disabled and elderly taxi passengers who require a standard saloon car as to opposed to a wheel chair assessable taxi as best practice recommend a mixed fleet?

 

The response as follows was read out by the Chairman:

 

There is no single source of data that gives a true or reliable picture of the number of disabled and elderly passengers who require a standard or a wheelchair accessible vehicle or data to confirm whether or not passengers who have a disability and who do not use a wheelchair would or would not be able to use a wheelchair accessible vehicle.  As a result certain assumptions have been made but these are supported by the DfT Inclusive Transport Strategy that sets a very clear vision for local authorities, which includes taking proactive steps to increase the number of wheelchair accessible vehicles in the fleet.  This does not detract from the availability of private hire vehicles that are not required to be wheelchair accessible and these private hire vehicles will continue to be available for those people with physical disabilities who cannot or do not wish to use a wheelchair accessible vehicle.  The Council licences a mixed fleet and the proposals support this position on the basis that there will continue to be over 680 private hire vehicles that will not be wheelchair accessible. 

 

Question 2 - received from Nicolas Cox:

 

Explain please how I can rebrand my vehicles as private hire when the name of my business is OSWESTRY CABS. Twelve years spent getting my business to the top of internet search will be wiped out overnight.

 

The response as follows was read out by the Chairman:

 

If a decision is taken by a proprietor to transfer to the private hire regime rather than provide a wheelchair accessible hackney carriage, there will be a requirement to remove any reference to ‘cabs’ on the private hire vehicle; the vehicle proprietor will have two years to take appropriate steps to market the rebranding of their vehicles to their customers.  This remains a decision for the business owner.  The current Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Licensing Policy 2015 to 2019 does not require the whole business to be rebranded and hence Oswestry Cabs as a business name can continue to be used and any internet search will not be affected.  The proposed revision of the Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Licensing Policy will be brought back to the Strategic Licensing Committee in January 2019 at which time further questions may be submitted in accordance with the Council’s Constitution.  

35.

Disclosable Pecuniary Interests

Minutes:

Members were reminded that they must not participate in the discussion or voting on any matter in which they had a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest and should leave the room prior to the commencement of the debate.

 

 

36.

Proposed Removal of the Existing Five Hackney Carriage Zones pdf icon PDF 159 KB

Report of the Transactional and Licensing Manager is attached, marked 5.

 

Contact: Mandy Beever (01743 251702)

 

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Consideration was given to the report of the Transactional and Licensing Team Manager (copy attached to the signed minutes).  The report set out a proposal for removal of the five existing Hackney Carriage Zones and apply a single Hackney Carriage licensing regime throughout the administrative area of Shropshire Council.

 

In response to a question in relation to the requirement for all vehicles to be wheelchair accessible and the financial impact on drivers, the Transactional and Licensing Team Manager explained that there would be a two year lead in period to allow for the trade to budget for the change in the licensing regime. Responding to a further question regarding how many disabled people require a wheelchair it was explained that it was not possible to obtain this information.

 

RESOLVED:

 

(1)  The Committee considered all the responses submitted during the consultation periods, the first one was undertaken from 25 June 2018 to the 2 September 2018 and the second one was undertaken from 8 October 2018 to the 4 November 2018 and noted the officer’s summary as set out in Appendix A.

 

(2)  The Committee agreed to recommend to the Council that the five existing Hackney Carriage Zones be removed and application of a single Hackney Carriage licensing regime throughout the administrative area of Shropshire Council take effect from date of 1 April 2021. 

 

37.

Future Agenda Items

Minutes:

The Committee were given the opportunity to identify additional matters that ought to be brought before the Committee for consideration.

 

Uber – In response to a request for an update on Uber and the potential impact on Shropshire the Transactional and Licensing Team Manager agreed to provide an update in due course.

 

Digital Transformation - In response to a request for an update on digital transformation, the Transactional and Licensing Team Manager agreed to provide an update in due course.

 

Licensing Budget – In response to a request for information regarding the Licensing budget, the Chairman stated that this information had been provided at the last meeting.

 

RESOLVED:

No future agenda items were identified.

38.

Date of Next Meeting

To note that the next meeting of the Strategic Licensing Committee will be held on Wednesday, 23rd January 2019 in the Shrewsbury Room, Shirehall, Shrewsbury.

Minutes:

RESOLVED:

 

It was noted that the next meeting of the Strategic Licensing Committee would be held on Wednesday, 23rd January 2019.

 

 

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