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PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2020 6:54 pm 
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Taxi drivers across Warwick district given licence holiday if they have stopped trading during lockdown

Taxi drivers across Warwick district who are struggling for work during the coronavirus lockdown are being given a ‘licence holiday’ if they have stopped trading.

The decision has been taken by Warwick District Council in response to a string of calls asking if licences needed renewing even though work had dried up.

Taxi and private hire drivers are permitted to work under transport exemptions but, due to Government guidance on business closures and social distancing measures, there has been a reported drop in demand and many have stopped work.

And with many operating as ‘sole traders’ it also means that a large number of drivers have struggled to access small business relief schemes available to other businesses.

Now council officers have agreed that those not working will be able to have a ‘licence holiday’.

A report considered by the district council’s executive explained: “Officers are being contacted daily by licence holders, asking if they must renew their licences in order not to lose them in accordance with the existing licensing requirements as laid out in the Drivers and Operators Handbook.”

It added that licences lasted for between one and five years depending on what type it was, with the costs ranging between £88 and £835. And it explained that drivers choosing to take advantage of a ‘licence holiday’ would need to hand over their documents.

The report said: “There is a risk that licence holders may declare that they are not operating and then continue to work.

“If licence holders wish to register themselves as ‘off the road’ they will be required to surrender their physical licences, plates and badges to us for the period. Anyone who then continues to operate will be committing a criminal offence which will be investigated in accordance with our policies.

“This offers some assistance to all licence holders that are not working. Those that were due to renew get to keep hold of any fees in the short term. However, all vehicle owners can take advantage of SORN or insurance options to allow them to access refunds or postpone monthly payments.

“This option leaves us with no reduction in income for the service, however, the income would be deferred to later in the year.”

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PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2020 7:02 pm 
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So what all this means, in a very round-the-houses way, is simply that a future application for an expired licence will be treated as a renewal rather than a fresh grant, as long as the licences etc are surrendered in the meantime.

As I said, in Scotland the legislation has always given that option to councils for three months (I think) and it's been extended to six months in the emergency legislation.

Problem is, it's always been a discretionary power, so I wouldn't want to take my chances in an area with restricted plate numbers [-(


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PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2020 7:03 pm 
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Quote:
So what all this means,

Basically they are allowing anyone to suspend a license.

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PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2020 7:09 pm 
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Sussex wrote:
Quote:
So what all this means,

Basically they are allowing anyone to suspend a license.

You're maybe right, but the article could certainly be construed as applying only to those requiring renewals:

Quote:
A report considered by the district council’s executive explained: “Officers are being contacted daily by licence holders, asking if they must renew their licences in order not to lose them in accordance with the existing licensing requirements as laid out in the Drivers and Operators Handbook.”

Very creative, though, just like Lewes :wink:


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PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2020 11:53 pm 
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Location: Scotland
Scottish borders , want the full amount on or just before the due date


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