To consider a report by the Chief Officer, Elections and Regulatory which seeks approval to the introduction of a new Taxi and Private Hire Licensing Policy document.
The Chief Officer, Elections and Regulatory submitted a report which sought approval for the introduction of a new Taxi and Private Hire Licensing Policy document.
Addressing the report the Taxi and Private Hire Manager spoke of the requirement of the Department for Transport (DfT) to produce the single Taxi and Private Hire Licensing Policy document as referred in the Statutory Taxi and Private Hire Vehicle Standards, published in July 2020.
Members were informed that Leeds City Council had previously endorsed many individual policies introduced over decades, these were now summarised into one single Taxi and Private Hire Licensing Policy document.
The Taxi and Private Hire Manager emphasised that this initial Taxi and Private Hire Licensing Policy introduced no new policy or regulatory content, however, it was noted that the report did provide an initial policy review timetable.
Members noted that Appendix A of the submitted report did include a list of the separate policies and conditions for future review of each part of the Taxi and Private Hire Licensing Policy.
Members asked if the report before Members today had been previously discussed with the trade.
The Taxi and Private Hire Manager confirmed the trade were aware of the report, the agenda for today’s meeting had also been circulated to trade representatives.
Members requested if the document could be re-checked to ensure it was in Plain English and any “clunky wording” had been replaced/ removed.
Officers gave an undertaking that a further read through would be carried out.
Commenting on the reciprocal enforcement powers to the 4 other West Yorkshire Authorities and also York City Council, Members asked what type of inspection would take place on a vehicle licensed for example, in York, but stopped by enforcement officers in Leeds.
Members were informed that officers would be authorised to speak with the driver of the vehicle, check the driver had a badge and to also check the vehicle was safe. The driver/ vehicle was not required to meet the Leeds standards.
Commenting on the wording within the “Vehicle Age Criteria”, it was suggested that some of the wording was confusing e.g. extended inspection at 7 or 8 years, Members were of the view that it should either be one or the other.
In responding the Taxi and Private Hire Manager said the wording was taken from the original document but, would be looked at again.
Members pointed out that there was a number of references to European Standards throughout the document and queried if this was accurate given the UK was no longer a member of the European Union.
Members were informed that no further guidance had been received following the UK’s exit from the European Union, the wording would remain until informed otherwise.
(i) To endorse the proposed Taxi and Private Hire Licensing Policy, noting this single document comprised of a summary of the existing policies, conditions, and byelaws. (The full and previously agreed text could be found in the policies and conditions referred to in the report appendices)
(ii) That the indicative review timetable be approved as set out in Section 12 of the submitted report