Licensing Committee – 22 September 2016
Chairman: Councillor K Vickers
Venue: Function Room 1, Civic Centre, Ashby Road, Scunthorpe
Time: 10 am
2. Declarations of disclosable pecuniary interests and personal or personal and prejudicial interests, and significant contact with applicants, objectors or third parties (lobbying), if any.
3. To take the minutes of the meeting of this committee held on 17 March 2016, as a correct record and authorise the Chairman to sign.
4. Sub-Committee Proceedings – To receive and where necessary confirm the minutes of the meeting of the following sub-committees-
(i) Licensing (Miscellaneous) Sub-Committee held on 21 April, 30 June, 19 July and 21 July 2016.
(ii) Licensing (Activities) Sub-Committee held on 14 March, 8 April, 14 April, 6 June, 27 June and 11 July 2016.
5. Zoo Licensing Act 1981 – Dispensation for Specific Zoo’s
6. Town Police Clauses Act 1847 – Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 – Members Handbook – Taxi and Private Hire Licensing
7. Any other items that the chairman decides are urgent by reason of special circumstances that must be specified.
PRESENT: – Councillor K Vickers in the chair.
Councillors P Vickers (Vice-Chairman), Ali, Allcock, Armitage, Clark, Ellerby, T Foster, Glover, Kataria, Longcake, Oldfield, C Sherwood and Wilson.
The committee met at Civic Centre, Scunthorpe.
1353 DECLARATIONS OF DISCLOSABLE PECUNIARY INTERESTS, PERSONAL OR PERSONAL AND PREJUDICIAL INTERESTS AND SIGNIFICANT CONTACT WITH APPLICANTS, OBJECTORS OR THIRD PARTIES (LOBBYING) – The following members declared personal interests –
Nature of Interest
|Councillor Ali||Taxi Licence Holder|
|Councillor Armitage||Personal Licence Holder|
|Councillor Kataria||Taxi Licence Holder|
|Councillor Oldfield||Personal Licence holder|
1354 MINUTES – Resolved – That the minutes of the proceedings of thiscommittee held on 17 March 2016, having been printed and circulated amongst the members, be taken as read and correctly recorded and signed by the chairman.
1355 SUB-COMMITTEE PROCEEDINGS – Resolved – That the minutes of the meetings of the Licensing (Miscellaneous) Sub-Committee held on 21 April, 30 June, 19 July and 21 July 2016 be received.
1356 SUB-COMMITTEE PROCEEDINGS – Resolved – That the minutes of the meetings of the Licensing (Activities) Sub-Committee held on 14 March, 8 April, 14 April, 6 June, 27 June and 11 July 2016 be received.
1357 (10) ZOO LICENSING ACT 1981 – DISPENSATION FOR SPECIFIC ZOOS – The Director of Places sought approval from the committee to make an application to the Secretary of State for Dispensation for a Zoo Licence.
Section 14 of the Zoo Licensing Act 1981 provided the Secretary of State with powers to relax the requirements of the Act for a small zoo or for a zoo exhibiting only a small number of different kinds of animals. Each case would be treated on its individual merits.
It was for the local authority to seek the section 14(1)(b) direction, which should be supported by a letter from a veterinary surgeon or practitioner (not used by the zoo in question) confirming that the collection appears to be run properly and the animals properly cared for.
Under section 14(1)(b), the Secretary of State may issue a direction to the effect that either a periodical or special inspection or both (but not an informal or licence inspection) shall not be required. The Secretary of State would take account of the health, safety or welfare of the animals and visitors to the zoo. Consideration would also be given to the conservation status of the animals as well as how hazardous they were.
In reaching a decision on any request for a direction under section 14, the Secretary of State would consult such persons on the list referred to in section 8 of the Act as she sees fit. Account would also be taken of the Zoo Guidance, which was contained at Appendix C to the report, although it should be noted that each case was treated on its individual merits.
Any direction made under section 14 of the Act may be varied or revoked by the Secretary of State on having consulted the local authority and such persons on the list as she thinks fit, and only where she is satisfied that doing so is not prejudicial to the protection of wild animals and the conservation of biodiversity. The Secretary of State would notify the local authority and the zoo operator in writing of any direction made or of any revocation or variation to such a direction.
A 14(1)(b) dispensation meant that the zoo does not require periodical inspections under s.10 and/or special inspection under s.11, and required only annual informal inspections under s.12 which was carried out by the Local Authority. In addition no conditions need to be attached, which meant they don’t have to meet conservation requirements.
Under section 14(1)(a), the Secretary of State may issue a direction to the effect that the Act shall not apply to a particular zoo. Prior to May 2014, Normanby Hall had a direction from the Secretary of State stating the Act did not apply due to its size.
When the estate reduced the sites acreage, it meant they now required a Zoo Licence.
On 14 July 2016 an inspection was carried out by an inspector allocated by the Secretary of State. The inspection report was attached at Appendix A; on page 2, the inspector believed consideration should be given to full dispensation due the premises being ‘just a deer park’.
Resolved – That the committee support the application for a zoo dispensation in regard to Normanby Hall, Scunthorpe.
1358 (11) TOWN POLICE CLAUSES ACT 1847 – LOCAL GOVERNMENT (MISCELLANEOUS) PROVISIONS ACT 1976 – MEMBERS HANDBOOK – TAXI AND PRIVATE HIRE LICENSING – The Director of Places circulated a report that introduced the committee to the ‘taxi and private hire vehicle licensing handbook’ that had recently been produced by the Local Government Association.
Hackney Carriage and Private Hire vehicles, drivers and operators were licensed in accordance with the Town Police Clauses Act 1847 and the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976.
Before issuing a licence to any person the Licensing Authority must be satisfied that a person was “fit and proper”. In order to determine if a person was fit and proper, the council undertakes a number of checks including an enhanced Disclosure and Baring Service (DBS) check.
The Local Government Association Handbook highlighted the role of councillors in the licensing function and dealt with the fit and proper person test, points scheme and enforcement. It also recommended that members of the Licensing Committee should be trained on safeguarding and Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) issues. A copy of the Members Handbook was attached to the report as Appendix A.
Many aspects of the handbook were already in place, however following an audit of the taxi licensing function it had been recommended that Safeguarding and CSE training be made mandatory for all members of the Licensing Committee..
Recommended to Council – (a) That the council’s Taxi Licensing Policy be amended to state that all members of the committee receive mandatory Safeguarding and Child Sexual Exploitation awareness training prior to them sitting on the committee or its sub committees, and (b) that the Local Government Association taxi and private hire vehicle licensing handbook be noted.
1359 TO APPOINT A LICENSING (MISCELLANEOUS) SUB-COMMITTEE –The chairman considered this item as a matter of urgency as it was a requirement in the council’s constitution that the Licensing Committee appointed members to its sub-committees.
Resolved – That a Licensing (Miscellaneous) Sub-Committee be appointed comprising five members of the Licensing Committee, three Conservative members (Councillors K Vickers (chairman), P Vickers (vice-chairman), and Clark) and two Labour members (Councillors Armitage and Oldfield).
1360 TO APPOINT A LICENSING (ACTIVITIES) SUB-COMMITTEE -The chairman considered this item as a matter of urgency as it was a requirement in the council’s constitution that the Licensing Committee appointed members to its sub-committees.
Resolved -That a Licensing (Activities) Sub–Committee be appointed comprising three members (politically balanced) drawn from the 15 members of the Licensing Committee. (Membership of the sub-committee to deal with individual cases to be appointed as required from eligible members).