Licensing Committee - 23/10/2012
At a MEETING of the LICENSING COMMITTEE held at Dundee on 23rd October, 2012.
Councillor Stewart HUNTER, Convener, in the Chair.
The minute of meeting of this Committee of 27th September, 2012 was held as read.
Unless marked thus * all items stand delegated.
I DECLARATION OF INTEREST
No declarations of interest were made.
It was reported that deputations relative to Article III Policy on Taxi Licences - "Recommendations as to Composition of Taxi Fleet and a Possible Limit on the Number of Taxis" and Article IV "Training for Taxi Drivers" had been received from the following organisations:-
(a) Dundee Taxi Association
(b) Unite the Union (Taxi Branch)
(c) Unite the Union (Training Section)
(d) Dundee 203020 Private Hire
(e) Tay Taxis
The Committee heard the deputations listed above.
III POLICY ON TAXI LICENCES - RECOMMENDATIONS AS TO COMPOSITION OF TAXI FLEET AND A POSSIBLE LIMIT ON THE NUMBER OF TAXIS
There was submitted Report No 393-2012 by the Head of Democratic and Legal Services submitting recommendations to the Committee regarding the composition of the city's taxi fleet in the light of the Committee's decision of 20th December, 2011 to agree, in principle, to maintain a "mixed fleet" of saloon cars and wheelchair accessible vehicles (WAV's) and to obtain the Committee's instructions as to unmet demand survey.
Thereafter, the Committee, having considered the report and representations made, agreed:-
(i) to set a target of a taxi fleet comprised of 40% saloon cars and 60% WAV's as constituting a proper balance to comply with its public sector equality duty under the Equality Act 2010;
(ii) to commission an unmet demand survey for the purposes of Section 10(3) of the Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982; and
(iii) that, new Taxi Licences be issued to any applicants prepared to put WAV's on service in accordance with the current policy until such time as any numerical limit on taxis was imposed, whereupon proposals would be submitted to the Committee as to how the respective percentages in Paragraph 2.1 of the report could best be achieved.
IV TRAINING FOR TAXI DRIVERS
Reference was made to Article II of the minute of meeting of this Committee of 20th December, 2011, wherein a further report regarding appropriate training for taxi drivers was requested.
There was submitted Agenda Note AN180-2012 reporting that this matter had been discussed at the Taxi Liaison Group at which the majority of Trade representatives indicated their preference for training to be provided to SVQ Level 2. Unite the Union had indicated that they could provide this training for their members at no cost. They also indicated that they could also provide the course for non-members at a cost of approximately 600. Details of the course were submitted. Discussions were also held with Dundee College who had also sourced a course by Go Skills which was similar to the course to be offered by Unite the Union. This course also comprised nine modules with 79 guided learning hours. The cost of this course was likely to be in excess of the discounted price of 600 being offered by Unite.
These courses met all the requirements of those who responded to the 2011 survey.
It was reported that having drivers trained to the above level should raise standards leading to a better service for passengers and fewer complaints.
Thereafter, having considered the content of the note and representations made, the Committee agreed, in principle, to introducing a requirement that all taxi drivers be trained to the above level and that a report outlining how this would be implemented, including timescales, be submitted to a future meeting.
Stewart HUNTER, Convener.