Agenda and minutes

Licensing Sub-Committee
Friday 9th June, 2017 2.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Wallfields, Hertford. View directions

Contact: Peter Mannings  Tel: (01279) 502174 Email:  peter.mannings@eastherts.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

1.

Appointment of Chairman

Minutes:

It was proposed by Councillor N Symonds and seconded by Councillor D Andrews that Councillor J Jones be appointed Chairman of the Licensing Sub-Committee for the meeting.

 

RESOLVED – that Councillor J Jones be appointed Chairman of the Licensing Sub-Committee for the meeting.

2.

Minutes – 13 April 2017 pdf icon PDF 38 KB

To approve the Minutes of Previous Sub-Committee meetings:

 

13 April 2017.

Minutes:

RESOLVED – that the Minutes of the meeting held on 13 April 2017 be confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

3.

Exclusion of press and public

To move that under Section 100(A)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972 the press and public be excluded from the meeting during discussion of item 8 on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in paragraph 1 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the said Act of the following description:

 

1.  “ Information relating to an individual”.

Minutes:

The Sub-Committee passed a resolution to pursuant to Section 100 (A) (4) of the Local Government Act 1972 as amended, to exclude the press and public during consideration of the business referred to in Minute 4 on the grounds that it involved the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in paragraph 1 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the said Act.

4.

Taxi Drivers Licence DD127 – Dual Driver with 12 Licensing Record Points

Minutes:

The Chairman outlined the procedure to be followed.  All those present were introduced.  The applicant agreed that Councillor Mrs R Cheswright and a Solicitor in training could remain in the room to observe the meeting.  The Service Manager – Licensing and Enforcement summarised why the matter had been reported to the Licensing Sub-Committee, as per the details in the licensing report including the statements of the Licensing Officer and two Police Officers.

 

The Service Manager (Licensing and Enforcement) advised that it was for the Authority to demonstrate whether the Taxi Driver remained a fit and proper person to hold the Licence.  He referred to the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 and the powers the Act granted to the Authority.

 

Members were advised that although the Taxi Driver had been bought before the Licensing Sub-Committee under the Licensing Record Points Scheme (12 points in the last 6 months), the Sub-Committee should consider the Taxi Driver’s conduct whilst he was being spoken to by Officers involved in the joint operation detailed in the report submitted.

 

The Service Manager advised that the points alone should not be taken as an indication of whether a licence should be suspended or revoked but could be considered as an indication that there were matters that Members should consider with regards to fitness and propriety.  Members had the option of extended the period of time that points remained on the Taxi Driver’s licence.  Members also had to be mindful of public safety as well as the safety of the travelling public.  The Licensing Points Scheme step-approach was explained as well as the fact that the Taxi Driver had breached a Traffic Regulation Order twice in the same location in the last 6 months.  Police video evidence had been recorded during a joint operation (via Police-worn body cameras) of the interaction with the Taxi Driver.

 

The Sub-Committee was shown the video evidence of the Taxi Driver’s conduct towards Licensing Officers and the Police during the joint operations.

 

In his submissions, the Taxi Driver stated that he had been a driver for 25 years and had never received any complaints from the travelling public or from the general public.  He alleged that he was unable to observe whether there were spaces on the taxi rank if he had parked anywhere other than where he had parked when being spoken to by Officers and the police.  He commented that there were too many taxis for the 7 rank spaces available.

 

The Taxi Driver admitted to being animated and frustrated with the difficulties of accessing a space on taxi ranks in East Herts.  He referred in particular to the taxi ranks in Hertford and Ware.  Councillor J Jones put it to the Taxi Driver that his reasons for knowingly parking his taxi illegally were that he felt he had no other option as the Taxi Rank was full.  Councillor N Symonds questioned the Taxi Driver in terms of whether a better reaction would have been to walk away rather than  ...  view the full minutes text for item 4.