Have Your Say on Taxi Licensing

Posted by: Press team on 15 November 2021 13:49

People across South Tyneside are being encouraged to have their say on a draft policy for the licensing of taxis and private hire vehicles.

As the Borough's Licensing Authority, the Council is responsible for making sure that the taxi and private hire services provided to the public are of the highest standard. The policy sets out how the authority exercises its licensing functions when making decisions about new licence applications, renewals and current licences.

The Council's is renewing its taxi and private hire licensing policy to reflect the Department for Transport's new statutory guidance for taxi and private hire standards as well as a new age policy and emissions standard for vehicles entering the trade. It also takes into account legislation changes, recent case law and experience gained by the Licensing Authority.

Local residents, businesses and visitors are invited to share their views on the proposed changes to the way taxis and private hire vehicles are licensed and operated.

Councillor Jim Foreman, Lead Member for Housing and Transport, said: "The taxi and private hire trade is an integral part of the Borough's local transport network. It not only plays an important role for the travelling public but provides accessibility to all social groups as well as essential support for our home to school transport service.

"We are developing a new policy to promote the highest possible standards across the service, with the key aims of ensuring the safety and welfare of the public and providing efficient, effective and sustainable services.

"One of the proposed updates also encourages environmental sustainability, supporting the Council's own commitment to becoming carbon neutral by 2030. The draft policy has been developed alongside the Council's climate change strategy as well as the integrated transport plan for South Tyneside.

"As the proposed new policy affects a large proportion of residents, users and providers, it is important that local people have the opportunity to express their views and help us to shape a policy that will serve South Tyneside well for the next five years."

In setting out the revised policy, the Council aims to carry out its functions under the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 and the Town Police Clauses Act (1847), by promoting:

  • The safety and protection of the public through ensuring licensed vehicles are safe, clean, reliable and accessible to meet the needs of local people. It also provides confidence in the system the Council uses for assessing whether or not an applicant is fit and proper;
  • The protection of children and vulnerable adults by placing the protection of the public at its core through mandated child sexual exploitation (CSE) awareness training for all drivers;
  • Environmental sustainability;
  • Clear and transparent clarity regarding the authority's decision-making process.

The Council is currently seeking the views of the police, transport services and representatives from the licensing trade as part of the consultation process.

Local people and business are also urged to get involved with feedback and comments encouraged up until 5 December 2021.

The draft policy is available on the Council's website at www.southtyneside.gov.uk/haveyoursay with comments to be emailed to the Licensing Team at licensing@southtyneside.gov.uk

The document can also be viewed in person at the Council's Licensing Section of South Shields Town Hall. Contact the Licensing Team to arrange a viewing on (0191) 424 7946.

Last modified: 01 December 2021 13:50