Agenda and minutes

Licensing and Appeals Committee
Tuesday, 16th June, 2015 7.00 pm

Venue: Civic Office, Shute End, Wokingham RG40 1BN

Contact: Tricia Harcourt  Senior Democratic Services Officer

Items
No. Item

1.

Minutes of Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 71 KB

To confirm the Minutes of the Meeting held 16 September 2014.

 

Minutes:

The Minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 16 September 2014 were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

2.

Apologies

To receive any apologies for absence.

Minutes:

An apology for absence was submitted from Councillor John Jarvis.

3.

Declaration of Interest

To receive any declarations of interest

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest submitted.

4.

Public Question Time

To answer any public questions

 

A period of 30 minutes will be allowed for members of the public to ask questions submitted under notice.

 

The Council welcomes questions from members of the public about the work of this committee.

 

Subject to meeting certain timescales, questions can relate to general issues concerned with the work of the Committee or an item which is on the Agenda for this meeting.  For full details of the procedure for submitting questions please contact the Democratic Services Section on the numbers given below or go to www.wokingham.gov.uk/publicquestions

Minutes:

There were no public questions received.

5.

Member Question Time

To answer any member questions

Minutes:

There were no Member questions received.

 

6.

Hackney Carriage Tariff Review pdf icon PDF 160 KB

To receive and consider a report detailing a review of the Hackney Carriage Tariffs and proposals for increasing charges.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee received a report, as set out on Agenda pages 7-16, detailing a proposed increase in charges to the existing tariff.  An appendix to the report giving details of the existing Wokingham Borough Council tariffs, which had been omitted from the agenda, was tabled. It was noted that he Council had consulted 100 hackney carriage drivers and 73 had responded. The majority had indicated that they would like changes to the existing tariff.

 

The proposals from the trade included:

 

·         a change in the flag rate from 836 yards to 704 yards or from 190 seconds to 150 seconds resulting in a fare increase of 15.8%.

 

·         a change to the increment for journeys over the flag rate resulting in a fare increase of 12%.

 

·         a change to the hour of Tariff 2 moving from 11pm to 10pm resulting in a fare increase of 21%.

 

Mr Leahy, Licensing Officer, advised the Committee that it was Wokingham Borough Council’s policy to consult on tariff changes every 12 months.  The Committee noted the changes proposed by some other  local authorities and also that some had ceased to consult hackney carriage drivers on changes to the tariffs and in these cases, no proposals to increase the tariffs had been put forward.

 

The Committee noted that no business case had been put forward to support the case for increasing the tariff. The Committee were concerned about the detrimental impact on residents and traders if tariff 2 was changed to start at 10pm from 11pm. The change could result in residents having to leave events early in order to avoid paying tariff 2 which might result in local traders losing custom.

 

The Committee resolved not to change the existing tariff due to having no evidence to justify the increase and the potential detrimental impact on residents and traders by allowing an increase.  The Committee also asked that any future proposals from the trade should be supported by a business case.

 

RESOLVED:  That no changes be made to the existing Hackney Carriage Tariff.

 

7.

Licensing Update and Annual Plan pdf icon PDF 115 KB

To receive and consider a report setting out the Licensing Team’s programme for the 2015/16 year and updates on items from 2014.

 

 

 

Minutes:

The Committee received a report on the Licensing Update and Annual Plan, as set out on Agenda pages 17 to 22, which provided an update on the work of the Licensing Team.

 

The Committee noted that the Licensing Team were in the process of reviewing all procedures with a view to streamlining the service and thereby making it more efficient. It was noted that the change in legislation, which abolished the requirement to renew personal licences, would result in a loss of revenue of around £59,200. The Finance Team were aware of this potential shortfall and had accordingly made adjustments to the budget. It was however noted that any member of the public could ask for a premises licence to be reviewed if they believed a breach of the licence had taken place.

 

RESOLVED:  That the Licensing Update and Annual Plan be noted.

 

8.

Hearings Update pdf icon PDF 8 KB

To receive  an update on the outcome of Hearings Sub Committees and Appeals Panels which have taken place since the last meeting of the Licencing and Appeals Committee.

Minutes:

The Committee considered a report, as set on Agenda pages 23 to 24, which gave an update on the outcome of appeals heard since the previous meeting of 16th September 2014.

 

RESOLVED:  That the information contained in the report be noted.