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PostPosted: Wed Mar 31, 2021 1:36 pm 
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As is often the case in articles like this, not clear if it's badges or plates here, or both.

But certainly looks like it's only one-year licences they're talking about. If they'd doubled the period on our three-year licences here then that would have been worth talking about, rather than extending them for three months to almost 2024, or whatever it was :roll:


West Dunbartonshire taxi drivers to have current licenses extended at no extra cost

https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/loca ... t-23827035

Allan Wright, who owns Wrights Taxis in the Vale, welcomed the news, as he said: “It’s been really difficult for many because there’s hardly any trade."

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Image: Daily Record/Lennox Herald

A Vale taxi firm owner has welcomed a move to extend cabbies’ licences for free to boost the struggling trade.

Taxi and private hire car drivers will have their current single-year licences extended to cover two years at no additional cost in a budget move agreed by West Dunbartonshire Council last week.

It comes after a Unite survey revealed many drivers across Scotland are regularly working 16 to 17-hour days with a shift being determined ‘good’ if £50 is cleared.

Allan Wright, who owns Wrights Taxis, said: “It’s been really difficult for many because there’s hardly any trade.

“There are some who are working between 8pm and 7am and it’s so quiet because there are no pubs open and no airport pick-ups or drop-offs.

“It’s difficult for those who own the seven-seaters too because there isn’t demand for them, especially with people not travelling to and from Glasgow Airport. Running costs are higher for them too.”

Welcoming the council move, he said: “It is great news for taxi drivers – they will be really chuffed with that.

“It will be a relief for some of them as some are really struggling to pay their bill, never mind other bills on top of that.

“We’ve also tried to help as much as we can by reducing radio costs for them.

“We’re looking to the future and hoping there is some light at the end of the tunnel now as the easing of restrictions begin.”

Speaking at the budget meeting last week, SNP council leader Jonathan McColl agreed with comments made by Labour’s Lawrence O’Neill that more should have been done to support the trade at a government level.

He said: “I agree more could be done by national government. I don’t care who. It should be coming from somewhere.

“The differences in support that has been available specifically for taxi drivers than other self-employed people is stark.

“A very small amount of money of £1,500 has been made available to taxi drivers who, while they have still been working, and this is the technicality that’s causing problems, it’s fair to say that their business has been seriously diminished.

“Councils across Scotland have continued to pay contracts to keep people afloat but not every taxi driver has school transport contracts, for example.

“These men and women who are out there, many of who have volunteered their time at no cost to the public to make sure that people get food and medicine and get to their doctors appointments free of charge when people can’t afford to pay.

“They have done a lot in our communities to support the Covid recovery and I think it’s right that we do what we can to support them.”

The council will spend £167,000 on the extension measure and a report will come to the licensing committee to start a consultation with the trade on the option of offering two or three-year licenses in the future.

A report also went to the meeting outlining the local authority’s licensing fees in comparison with other councils in Scotland.

It revealed that a taxi driver can pay £1,707 in fees over a period of six years, compared to £225 in Aberdeen City and £324 in Glasgow.

Allan said the local taxi trade has long raised the issue, stating: “We’ve raised the difference in costs between West Dunbartonshire and other areas for a while.

“They come back and tell us it’s to do with the licensing costs which are different for authorities. It depends on how many licensing staff they have and how many taxi operators they have in each area.”

Labour councillor Martin Rooney also questioned officers on the difference, saying: “There’s quite a big difference between West Dunbartonshire and Aberdeen City and I wonder why we get such a discrepancy. I would imagine everybody follows a similar process.”

An officer said the fees are regularly reviewed, replying: “It’s on a cost recovery basis. All I can comment on is how we do our own and there’s no national guidance.

“Each individual local authority has different costings.”


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 31, 2021 1:36 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 16, 2012 5:33 am
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Clueless councillor wrote:
“The differences in support that has been available specifically for taxi drivers than other self-employed people is stark."

Er, the SEISS (the main source of help for the self-employed) doesn't differentiate on the basis of whether recipients are taxi drivers, or whatever.

Clueless councillor wrote:
“A very small amount of money of £1,500 has been made available to taxi drivers who, while they have still been working, and this is the technicality that’s causing problems, it’s fair to say that their business has been seriously diminished."

:-s


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 31, 2021 2:35 pm 
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Quote:
It revealed that a taxi driver can pay £1,707 in fees over a period of six years, compared to £225 in Aberdeen City and £324 in Glasgow.

Seems I may have jumped the gun a bit earlier when I cast doubt on the figures (now deleted :oops: )

The £225 for six years in Aberdeen seems to be based on two three-year badge renewals, so good value =D>

But a one year badge renewal in West Dunbartonshire seems to cost £284.50 :-o

So that would indeed come to £1,707 over six years :shock:

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 31, 2021 2:36 pm 
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Funny though that West Dunbartonshire seems to have only one-year badges, and only three-year plates.

Which is the opposite to the default in England, which is for longer badges but shorter plates? :-k


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