Agenda and minutes

Licensing Committee - Thursday, 13th February, 2020 6.30 pm

Venue: Meeting Room 1, Council Offices, Priory Road, Spalding

Contact: Democratic Services  01775 764626

No. Item


Apologies for absence.


Apologies for absence were received from Councillor A Cronin.


Declarations of Interest

Where a Councillor has a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest the Councillor must declare the interest to the meeting and leave the room without participating in any discussion or making a statement on the item, except where a Councillor is permitted to remain ad a result of a grant of dispensation.


There were none.


Minutes pdf icon PDF 132 KB

To sign as a correct record the minutes of the meeting held on 7 November 2019.




Consideration was given to the minutes of the meeting of the Licensing Committee held on 7 November 2019.




That subject to the amendment of Cllr Woolf’s apologies being added, the minutes be signed as a correct record.



Taxi Licensing update and safeguarding training

To provide a verbal update on the taxi licensing policy review, and changes to driver safeguarding training.


The Committee received an update from the Licensing and Business Support Manager regarding the Taxi Licensing update and upcoming safeguarding training.


Taxi Licensing Update


Members were informed that the Taxi Licensing Policy was about to go out to consultation.  Some work had been done to identify consultees which would include Drivers and agencies and also street pastors and faith groups.  There was an amendment which needed to be made in relation to the NR3, which is the national database for Local Authorities to input and search for licences which had been revoked and it was felt that the policy needed to be strengthen in line with this.  The Policy will cover what the Licensing Team would be doing to add drivers to the database, and will explain what would be added into the document from national guidance.  Members were informed that the document would be circulated via email.


Members of the committee enquired about how long the consultation period would be and were informed that the consultation period would take 12 weeks. This would take into account the document being sent to drivers, operators and the police.  Members also enquired whether other local authorities were using the database.  The Licensing and Business Support Manager informed that Committee that it was not mandatory for Local Authorities to use the database. 


The Vice-Chairman informed the Committee of a recent visit which took place to the Licensing Conference at the Local Government Authority (LGA) which showed the impact that the database was having on several other local authorities who had adopted the database, which given local authorities the ability to see if a driver has convictions in other boroughs and the risks posed to the general public.


Members agreed that it is essential to ensure that the local authorities close to SHDC (including Boston and Peterborough) also use the database so that there is closer scrutiny of drivers who moved to other boroughs to work. 


The Committee were informed that the Policy was scheduled to be presented to the Policy Development Panel in March 2020.


Safeguarding Training


The Licensing and Business Support Manager gave Members a presentation relating to the new e-learning safeguarding Training.


Members were informed of the e-learning safeguarding training which would be introduced for Taxi drivers.  This is being undertaken with Lincolnshire Safeguarding Children’s Partnership.  This training has been in placed for around 4 years, but will now become mandatory.  The training will be compulsory on application for a licence.


Members debated how the training would be assessed and where the training would be carried out to ensure that the person taking the test was the person applying for the licence.  Members were concerned that consideration be taken to ensure that all taxi licence holders sitting the training had good comprehension of English, both spoken and written.  The Licensing and Business Support Manager informed Members that all drivers taking the training had to do an assessment at the end of the two modules, so it would be essential that they  ...  view the full minutes text for item 9.


Animal Welfare

To provide a verbal update on animal welfare and Lucy’s Law.


The Committee received an update from the Licensing and Business Support Manager regarding new Animal Welfare legislation.


Members were informed that in 2018 animal welfare legislation came into effect, but this did not cover third party sales. The Licensing and Business Support Manager told members that Lucy’s Law would come into effect on 6th April 2020 which will ensure that anyone looking to buy or adopt a puppy or kitten must either deal directly with the Licensed breeder or an animal rehoming centre.


Members asked how the legislation would be policed and what would stop people falling into a trap within the black market.  It was noted that the issue would need to be monitored closely to ensure that breeders were licensed and to reduce the amount of animals being dumped.  Members also asked about the law on animals being chipped.  The Licensing and Business Support Manager informed members that at present all dogs must be chipped and this can be enforced by a local authority.  In regards to breeders all puppies must be chipped with the breeder first, and when they are sold the new owner must have their details changed by a vet.  Members were informed that an Officer goes to the breeders property with a vet to carry out checks on all areas of the property and that there was a statutory qualification for breeders to complete.  The licensing regime, however, does not cover enforcement of breeders of kittens.  Members asked with owners were being fined for having out of date information on the chipped dogs or those dogs who were not chipped.  The Licensing and Business Support Manager stated that she would enquire with the relevant officer for up to date information on this.


Members enquired as to any training that could be provided on animal welfare as it is an area that Members do not necessarily have knowledge in.


Members also enquired as to whether it was worth having a conversation with the police regarding the enforcement of dog carriers and restraints in cars to ensure that breeders and owners were being responsible and complying with the law regarding the transportation of pets.




That the update be noted.


Any other items which the Chairman decides are urgent.



NOTE:            No other business is permitted unless by reason of special circumstances, which shall be specified in the minutes, the Chairman is of the opinion that the item(s) should be considered as a matter of urgency. 


There were none.