Agenda and minutes

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Items
No. Item

34.

Apologies

To receive any apologies for absence.

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Burke, Susan Emmott, McCarthy, Rush and Donna Williams.

35.

Declarations of Interest

Members are required to declare any disclosable pecuniary, personal or personal and prejudicial interests they may have and the nature of those interests relating to items on this agenda and/or indicate if S106 of the Local Government Finance Act 1992 applies to them.   

Minutes:

Councillor Wazir declared a personal interest in agenda item 5 (Greater Manchester Minimum Licensing Standards for Taxi and Private Hire; Stage 2 recommendations report for vehicle standards), insofar as he was the Assistant to the Portfolio Holder for Climate Change and Sustainability.

36.

Urgent Items of Business

To determine whether there are any additional items of business which, by reason of special circumstances, the Chair decides should be considered at the meeting as a matter of urgency.

Minutes:

There were no urgent item for this meeting of the Committee to consider.

37.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 62 KB

To consider the minutes of the meeting of Planning and Licensing Committee held 4th November 2021.

Minutes:

Resolved:

That the Minutes of the meeting of the Planning and Licensing Committee held on 4th November 2021 be approved as correct records.

38.

Greater Manchester Minimum Licensing Standards for Taxi and Private Hire; Stage 2 recommendations report for vehicle standards

To consider Minimum Licensing Standards for Taxi and Private Hire Vehicles

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered a report of the Director of Neighbourhoods, which detailed work that had been undertaken to meet the requirements of the ten Greater Manchester Authorities to collectively develop, approve and implement a common set of minimum licensing standards for taxi and private hire vehicles.

 

The Committee was being consulted on the proposals, detailed in the report, which were subject to a Greater Manchester wide consultation exercise that included local authorities and representatives of the licensed hackney carriage and private hire trades. Members of the Committee were reminded that Stage One of this matter, relating to taxi and private hire drivers had been presented to an earlier meeting, on 2nd September 2021 (minute 19 refers).

 

The Committee were advised that presently there were around 2,000 hackney vehicles, 11,500 private hire vehicles and over 18,600 drivers that were licensed across the 10 Greater Manchester Authorities. Whilst there were many similarities in terms of policy standards and licence conditions, there was also significant differences, particularly when it came to policies relating to the licensing of vehicles, the calculation of licensing fees and the approach to proactive compliance.

 

In 2018, Greater Manchester’s 10 local authorities agreed to collectively develop, approve and implement a common set of minimum licensing standards for taxi and private hire services.

 

At that time, the primary driver for this work was to ensure public safety and protection, but vehicle age and emission standards, in the context of the Clean Air and the decarbonisation agendas were now also major considerations. In addition, by establishing standards around common vehicle specifications, minimum licensing standards was an important mechanism that permitted the systematic improvements to taxi and private hire service across Greater Manchester and their visibility.

 

The Greater Manchester minimum licensing standards were ready to be consulted on when the Department for Transport published statutory guidance for taxi and private hire licensing authorities in July 2020. The minimum licensing standards project demonstrated regard for that guidance, which largely mirrored what had already been proposed across Greater Manchester, and reference is made in the Committee’s report where appropriate.

 

The stated vision of the ten Greater Manchester authorities, as outlined at paragraph 9.2 of e submitted report, was to continue to work closely together, influence policy change and support the licensed trade by delivering on its promise to provide financial support to move to greener vehicles. This was described as the beginning of a process to deliver excellence in licensing regulation in Greater Manchester. This in turn should help drive more business and passengers to a well-regulated, safe and efficient locally licensed hackney and private hire trade, for example by the Greater Manchester local authorities, Transport for Greater Manchester and the Greater Manchester Combined Authority to deliver ‘public relations’ and other campaigns that would encourage the public to only use and book local licensed services.

 

Alternatives considered:

None, as alternatives to the Greater Manchester minimum licensing standards undermines the vision as detailed at paragraph 9.2 of the submitted report.

 

Resolved:

1.     The Committee  ...  view the full minutes text for item 38.