Agenda and draft minutes

SWT Licensing Committee
Monday, 21st June, 2021 6.15 pm

Venue: The John Meikle Room - The Deane House. View directions

Contact: Clare Rendell Email: c.rendell@somersetwestandtaunton.gov.uk 

Webcast: View the webcast

Items
No. Item

1.

Appointment of Chair

2.

Appointment of Vice-Chair

3.

Apologies

4.

Minutes of the previous meeting of the Licensing Committee pdf icon PDF 118 KB

5.

Declarations of Interest

    To receive and note any declarations of disclosable pecuniary or prejudicial or personal interests in respect of any matters included on the agenda for consideration at this meeting.

     

    (The personal interests of Councillors and Clerks of Somerset County Council, Town or Parish Councils and other Local Authorities will automatically be recorded in the minutes.)

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Members present at the meeting declared the following personal interests in their capacity as a Councillor or Clerk of a County, Town or Parish Council or any other Local Authority:-

     

    Name

    Minute No.

    Description of Interest

    Reason

    Action Taken

    Cllr M Barr

    All Items

    Wellington

    Personal

    Spoke and Voted

    Cllr S Coles

    All Items

    SCC & Taunton Charter Trustee

    Personal

    Spoke and Voted

    Cllr S Lees

    All Items

    Taunton Charter Trustee

    Personal

    Spoke and Voted

    Cllr M Lithgow

    All Items

    Wellington

    Personal

    Spoke and Voted

    Cllr J Lloyd

    All Items

    Wellington & Sampford Arundel

    Personal

    Spoke and Voted

    Cllr C Palmer

    All Items

    Minehead

    Personal

    Spoke and Voted

    Cllr R Tully

    All Items

    West Monkton

    Personal

    Spoke

    Cllr B Weston

    All Items

    Taunton Charter Trustee

    Personal

    Spoke and Voted

    Cllr L Whetlor

    All Items

    Watchet

    Personal

    Spoke and Voted

     

6.

Public Participation

    The Chair to advise the Committee of any items on which members of the public have requested to speak and advise those members of the public present of the details of the Council’s public participation scheme.

     

    For those members of the public who have submitted any questions or statements, please note, a three minute time limit applies to each speaker and you will be asked to speak before Councillors debate the issue.

     

    Temporary measures during the Coronavirus Pandemic

    Due to the temporary legislation (within the Coronavirus Act 2020, which allowed for use of virtual meetings) coming to an end on 6 May 2021, the council’s committee meetings will now take place in the office buildings within the John Meikle Meeting Room at the Deane House, Belvedere Road, Taunton. Unfortunately due to capacity requirements, the Chamber at West Somerset House is not able to be used at this current moment.  

     

    Following the Government guidance on measures to reduce the transmission of coronavirus (COVID-19), the council meeting rooms will have very limited capacity.  With this in mind, we will only be allowing those members of the public who have registered to speak to attend the meetings in person in the office buildings, if they wish (we will still be offering to those members of the public that are not comfortable in attending, for their statements to be read out by a Governance and Democracy Case Manager).  Please can we urge all members of the public who are only interested in listening to the debate to view our live webcasts from the safety of their own home to help prevent the transmission of coronavirus (COVID-19). 

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    No members of the public had requested to speak on any item on the agenda.

7.

Licensing Quarterly Update Report pdf icon PDF 248 KB

    This report gives officers the opportunity to update members of the committee on work of note, progress on any projects, changes in legislation and look ahead to any significant events that lie ahead.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    During the discussion, the following points were made:-

    ·       Councillors queried what licensing information was held on the council’s website.

    The Licensing Specialist advised that there was a lot of information held on the website to help assist licence holders with their responsibilities and to guide them on the different processes to follow.  Complaints made against licence holders were not held as part of that information.

    ·       Concern was raised on the properties at West Bay Residential Park.

    The Licensing Specialist advised that since the report had been published, a compliance notice had been served.  The geo-technical report suggested that stabilisation works could be done on the proviso that the cliff works were carried out.  The notice had now changed to ask that the impacted homes were moved.

    ·       Councillors queried whether the Licensing Department were involved with the work that was carried out by the Covid Marshalls.

    The Licensing Specialist advised that Licensing were involved and that the marshals reported to a Covid Compliant Manager who met with the other responsible parties to discuss any complaints that had been received and who then decided on any necessary action to be taken.

    ·       Councillors suggested that a GPS system should be installed in all taxi vehicles to help reduce the amount of accidents or prevent cases of assault.

    The Licensing Specialist advised that there was no requirement but he was happy to investigate further.

    ·       Councillors requested clarification on the extension available for pavement licences mentioned in the update report.

    The Licensing Specialist gave clarification.

    ·       Councillors queried whether there had been any increase in taxi driver applications from operators outside the council area since 2019.

    The Licensing Specialist advised that the council had adopted a policy to ensure that any drivers applying from outside the area had to prove they would be predominantly working within the council area, which had dealt with that issue.

    ·       Councillors asked for a progress update on the amalgamation of the old West Somerset and Taunton Deane licensing policies.

    The Licensing Specialist advised that work had been carried out on the old policies but had not yet been completed.

    ·       Councillors queried whether the proportion of private hire licences compared to hackney carriage licences was reasonable.

    The Licensing Specialist advised that the department had previously carried out an unmet demand review, which highlighted that a limit of taxi licences would go against good practice and was not required within the area.

    ·       Councillors queried whether taxi safety checks were still being carried out.

    The Licensing Specialist advised that the multi-agency checks were still being carried out but could not disclose the dates they would be done.

    ·       Councillors queried why there was only fifteen saloon licences as they would like to see more inclusion of other types of vehicles.

    The Licensing Specialist agreed and advised that it would be looked at as part of some work to ensure more types of vehicles were included.  He also highlighted that officers would also calculate the amount of vehicles that would be required to be wheelchair accessible,  ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.