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PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2010 9:56 am 
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Recommendations from Taxi Survey

The Chairman told the group that a member of the public wished to speak to this item following its introduction by the officer and questions from members.

Steve Loudoun, Chief Officer – Environment and Protection, introduced the
recommendations, which came as a result of the Taxi Survey. The recommendations contained in the report were based on further consultation with the trade, and they suggested continued limitation of the issue of hackney carriage licences. In response to a question about taxi ranks where no passengers were picked up, Mr Loudoun told the meeting that officers were talking to the trade and would bring recommendations
about this in due course.

The unmet need survey revealed that there was a need for awareness-raising about the difference between a hackney carriage and private hire vehicle. It had been suggested that private hire vehicles might have signage on the side of the vehicle indicating that it was for “advance booking only”. The officers also indicated that it would be profitable to have some committee members to give input to the discussions about the taxi survey.

In response to a question about the long-awaited DfT guidance, one of the officers indicated that although it had not yet been published, the consultation document had been seen, and this appeared to have nothing new of significance in it.

The Chairman invited John Yexley, Bracknell Licensed Taxi Forum Chairman, to speak to the meeting. He opened by thanking the Committee on behalf of the Borough’s drivers for limiting hackney carriage licences. The drivers would appreciate it if the Committee would continue this for three years, to 2012. He knew Councillors had read the survey and taxi drivers were working with officers to cover the needs of
disabled people so that they received a dedicated service. Mr Yexley had offered his services to the officers to help train drivers on the use of disabled equipment in hackney carriages. There were new vehicles coming onto the market which were even better equipped for the needs of disabled people and he believed these would attract more customers.
The Chairman thanked Mr Yexley and asked if there were any questions, but there was none.

The Chairman then asked whether there were any members who would
like to be involved in the continuing discussion on this subject, and Cllr Leake indicated his willingness. The Chief Officer – Environment and Protection suggested that an officer/member/trade working group needed to be set up and a resolution brought to the next meeting.

The Committee RESOLVED

(a) to note progress already made;

(b) to request officers and members to work together with the trade in order for officers to bring a further report to the next meeting; and

(c) to continue with the restriction on the issue of Hackney Carriage licences whilst issues arising from the TPI recommendations were being actively pursued.

25. Fees and Charges
Steve Loudoun introduced the report, which had been circulated. He drew the meeting’s attention to the fact that an objection had been raised over the increase of the licence fee for hackney carriages. The basis for the BTLF’s objection was that the Council planned to increase the fee by £7 when the trade had not requested or received any increase in the fare rate since July 2008.

The Chairman thanked the officers for their hard work in drawing up all the tables of fees, and reminded the Committee that these fees were merely to cover the cost of the officers’ time in administration, and were not for profit. Robert Sexton clarified the question of comparison with fees from other UAs in the area, indicating that once the £50 Unmet Need survey fee was deducted, Bracknell’s fees were very similar to
those of neighbouring authorities.

The Chairman invited John Yexley to speak to the meeting. Mr Yexley asked the members to vote against the rise in fee; the drivers were asking for a little leeway in the light of the fact that they had not increased their fares for over a year. He suggested the Council could save money by not sending out reminders to drivers; this matter had been raised before, and the Chief Officer agreed that this should be
The Chairman then suggested an amendment that in the light of representations made, and given the current economic situation, the fee remain at £270. It was pointed out to the Committee that this was a matter for the Committee’s determination and not the Executive’s as had been indicated in the report.

The Committee RESOLVED that the Hackney Carriage fee should not be increased, and should remain at £270.

26. Bracknell Licensed Taxi Forum

The Licensing Team Leader introduced the information item, and the Chairman suggested that members would find these meetings very interesting and well worth attending.

Mick Hildreth (07814 032002)
GMB PDB P39 Southern Region Branch Secretary

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PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2010 5:58 pm 
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Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2003 7:30 pm
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Location: 1066 Country
All this done with no strike?

Unbelievable. :shock:


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