Agenda and minutes

Licensing and Safety Committee - Thursday, 2nd September, 2021 7.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber - Town Hall. View directions

Items
No. Item

LSP.1

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were submitted by Councillors C Walsh and M Smith.

LSP.2

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

Members of the Licensing and Safety Panel are asked to consider whether they have an interest in any of the matters on the agenda, and if so, to formally declare that interest.  

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest made at the meeting.

 

LSP.3

MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETINGS pdf icon PDF 222 KB

The Minutes of the Meeting held on the 8th July 2021 and 22nd July are attached. Members of the Licensing & Safety Committee are asked to consider whether these are a correct record of the meeting, and if so, to formally approve them.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Delegated decision:

 

That the Minutes of the last meeting held on 8th and 22nd July 2021 be approved as a correct record and signed by the Chair.

 

LSP.4

PUBLIC QUESTION TIME

Questions are invited from members of the public present at the meeting on any matters for which this Panel is responsible.

 

Approximately 30 minutes will be set aside for Public Question Time if required.

Minutes:

Mr Mahmood representing the Taxi Trade attended the meeting and raised the following concerns:

Rise in the number of incidents of abuse and violence towards taxi drivers operating in the Borough, Clean Air Charging Zone and eligibility for grants.

 

Responding Councillor Walmsley reported that she is also had concern about issues of violence and abuse towards the taxi trade and this has been raised with Greater Manchester Police.

 

In relation to the eligibility for grants to upgrade private hire vehicles, the Chair reported that 24 million pounds has been made available in grants to support this process, further details in respect of the timeline for applying for these grants will be forthcoming.

 

It was agreed:

 

The issues raised by Mr. Mahmood in relation to concerns about raising cases of violence and abuse towards taxi drivers and grants for upgrading vehicles as a result of the Clean Air Zone will be added to the agenda for the next meeting with the taxi trade.  

 

LSP.5

OPERATIONAL REPORT pdf icon PDF 532 KB

A report from the Executive Director (Operations) is attached.

Minutes:

The Executive Director (Operations) submitted a report advising Members on operational issues within the Licensing Service.

 

The report set out updates in respect of the following issues:

 

  • LICENSING HEARINGS SUB COMMITTEE
  • COVID MARSHALLS
  • PARKLIFE LETTERS
  • COMPLIANCE VISITS

 

Responding to questions from elected members; the Licensing manager reported that the Covid marshalls will be working and assisting the licensing staff at the Parklife festival.  Following Parklife the role will include visiting premises and providing assistance to the trading standards and licensing officers and helping with administration tasks including data cleansing.  Money to fund these posts is as a result of additional funding received by the Council to assist with the Pandemic.

 

In relation to Parklife, the Chair reported that lessons have been learnt since the initial Parklife festival and this has led to significant improvements.

 

It was agreed:

 

That the report be noted.

 

Responding to questions from elected members; the Licensing manager reported that the Covid marshalls will be working and assisting the licensing staff at the Parklife festival.  Following Parklife the role will include visiting premises and providing assistance to the trading standards and licensing officers and helping with administration tasks including data cleansing.  Money to fund these posts is as a result of additional funding received by the Council to assist with the Pandemic.

 

In relation to Parklife, the Chair reported that lessons have been learnt since the initial Parklife festival and this has led to significant improvements.

 

It was agreed:

 

That the report be noted.

 

LSP.6

COMMON MINIMUM LICENSING STANDARDS pdf icon PDF 2 MB

A report from the Executive Director (Operations) is attached..

Minutes:

The Executive Director (Operations) submitted a report, the report outlines the work that has been undertaken by the Greater Manchester Licensing Network and Transport for Greater Manchester in relation to Common Minimum Licensing Standards for Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Licensing. It details the consultation that has taken place and feedback and comments received. The standards detailed in the report relate to licensed drivers, licensed private hire operators and local authority and the proposals and recommendations made in the report are designed to ensure a safe, visible, accessible and high[1]quality hackney and private hire service.

 

The follow questions and issues were raised:

 

Members expressed support for the wearing of Uniforms for Members of the taxi trade.

 

Responding to a Member’s question the Licensing manager reported that there were a number of discussions with the Taxi trade in relation to these proposed standards; sessions were publicised widely by email including a session in the Town Hall, consultation responses from Bury were low.  The Licensing Manager reported that he will provide a breakdown of the consultation responses received.

 

Delegated decisions:

 

To adopt the recommendations presented in section 4 (Lead Officer Recommendations) for each proposed standard for implementation by 1 December 2021 unless an alternative date is specified, or a further report is required.

 

LSP.7

URGENT BUSINESS

Any other business, which by reason of special circumstances, the Chair agrees may be considered as a matter of urgency.

Minutes:

No urgent business was reported.

LSP.8

EXCLUSION OF PRESS AND PUBLIC

To consider passing the appropriate resolution under section 100 (A)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972 that the press and public be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the following item of business since it involves the likely disclosure of the exempt information stated.

 

 

Minutes:

Delegated decision:

 

That in accordance with Section 100(A)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the press and public be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the following items of business since it involved the likely disclosure of information relating to individuals who hold Licences granted by the Authority or Applicants for Licences provided by the Authority.

 

LSP.9

SUSPENSION/REVOCATION OF PRIVATE HIRE DRIVER LICENCE

A report from the Executive Director (Operations) is attached.

Minutes:

Licence Holder 14/2021

 

The Executive Director (Operations) submitted a report relating to Licence Holder 14/2021 who attended the meeting. The Chair made introductions. The Legal Officer outlined the procedure to be followed and clarified that all those present had read the report. The report which was accepted by the Licence Holder set out the reasons for the Licence Holder being before the Panel.

 

This client has previously held a private hire driver’s licence continually since 16th February 2016 and has a current licence until the 27th January 2022. He emailed the licensing department on 27th May 2021 to inform us that he had received a motoring conviction following an email that went to all licensed drivers to remind them of the conditions attached to their licence. The details of the conviction are as follows; Offence Date Expiry Date Sentence SP50 – Exceeding speed limit on a motorway 6th March 2021 6th March 2024 Licence endorsed with 3 penalty points Fine £100

 

This client was subsequently questioned by the Deputy Licensing Officer. He explained that the offence had occurred due to speeding on the motorway. The applicant was asked why he had not declared the conviction in line with his conditions and he explained that he had forgotten and only remembered when he received the email from Licensing. The applicant was apologetic.

 

Delegated decision:

 

The Committee carefully considered the report, and oral representations by the licence holder.

 

Taking into account the Council’s Conviction Policy and Guidelines and in accordance with the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976, that the committee resolved to admonish the licensee as to future conduct and remind the applicant to recognise the responsibility for declaring future convictions within the timescales on the licence.

 

Licence Holder 18/2021

The Executive Director (Operations) submitted a report relating to Licence Holder 18/2021. The Licensing Manager reported that the Licence Holder had contracted Covid and had requested a deferral

 

Delegated decision:

 

The Licencing Committee agreed that Licence Holder 18/2021 would be deferred for consideration at the next meeting of the Licensing Committee.

 

LSP.10

APPLICATIONS FOR THE GRANT/RENEWAL OF PRIVATE HIRE DRIVER LICENCES

A report from the Executive Director (Operations) is attached.

Minutes:

Licence Holder 19/2021

 

The Executive Director (Operations) submitted a report relating to Licence Holder 19/2021 who attended the meeting with his representative. The Chair made introductions. The Legal Officer outlined the procedure to be followed and clarified that all those present had read the report. The report which was accepted by the Licence Holder set out the reasons for the Licence Holder being before the Panel. 

 

This applicant has held a private hire driver licence continuously since the 7th April 2004 until its expiry on 20th July 2021. It has been renewed without prejudice until the date of this committee. He submitted an online application to renew his Private Hire driver’s licence on the 14th July 2021.

 

He submitted an online application and declared a speeding offence from 25th June 2021. A subsequent check of this applicants DVLA driving licence indicated that the aforementioned date was incorrect and the driver held the following convictions:

 

Offence

Offence Date

Expiry Date

Sentence

SP30 - Exceeding statutory speed limit on a public road

 

 

 

 

SP30 - Exceeding statutory speed limit on a public road

 

25th March 2021

 

 

 

 

27th August 2020

25th March 2024

 

 

 

 

27th August 2023

Licence endorsed with 3 penalty points Fine - £100

 

Licence endorsed with 3 penalty points Fine - £100

 

For the offence in March 2021; the client correctly notified the licensing service within 7 days of receiving his endorsed DVLA licence. However, the licensing service has no record of the offence from August 2020. Consequently, it was not declared within the correct time frame as stipulated in the private hire drivers licence conditions.

 

Condition 13 of this clients Private Hire Drivers Licence states:

Convictions – If you are formally cautioned for an offence or convicted of an offence you must tell us in writing, within seven days. Write to the Licensing Unit Manager, 3 Knowsley Place, Duke Street, Bury, BL9 0EJ. All 15 conditions relating to a private hire driver are printed on the reverse of the licence. This client was subsequently interviewed by a licensing enforcement officer.

 

He explained that at the time of the 2020 conviction he thought the licensing service was closed due to the coronavirus pandemic and he was not able to tell anyone. He explained that he was not working at the time. However, his DVLA driving licence was endorsed with penalty points and a fine was issued. He accepts the misunderstanding but thought the licensing service was aware of the 2020 conviction.

 

Delegated decision:

 

The Panel carefully considered the report, the additional documentation and oral representations by licence holder 19/2021and taking into account the Council’s Conviction Policy and Guidelines and in accordance with the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976, resolved, unanimously to grant the licence for a period of 12 months.

 

Licence Holder 20/2021

 

The Executive Director (Operations) submitted a report relating to Licence Holder 19/2021 who attended the meeting with his representative. The Chair made introductions. The Legal Officer outlined the procedure to be followed and clarified that all those present  ...  view the full minutes text for item LSP.10