Agenda and minutes

Licensing and Appeals Hearings Panel
Thursday, 27th September, 2018 9.30 am

Venue: Main Committee Room, Civic Centre, Stone Cross, Northallerton

Contact: Democratic Services Officer  01609 767015

Items
No. Item

LAHP.15

Exclusion of the Public and Press

To consider passing a resolution under Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972 excluding the press and public from the meeting during consideration of item 3 on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in paragraph1 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Act.

Minutes:

That under Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the press and public were excluded from the meeting during consideration of the item of business at minute no LAHP.16 on the grounds that it involved the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in paragraph 1 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Act as the Panel was satisfied that the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighed the public interest in disclosing the information.

LAHP.16

Application for Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Driver Licence

Report of the Director of Law and Governance (Monitoring Officer)

Minutes:

The subject of the decision:

 

The Panel was asked to consider whether to grant or refuse an application for a hackney carriage and private hire driver licence submitted by the applicant. 

 

Alternative options considered:

 

The Panel considered the options outlined in the Director’s report.  The Panel was not satisfied that the applicant was a fit and proper person to hold a hackney carriage and private hire driver’s licence.  The Panel was not satisfied that granting the licence would adequately serve the interests of the public. 

 

The reason for the decision:

 

The Panel considered the Director’s report, the application for a hackney carriage and private hire driver licence, the applicant’s oral submissions, the Council’s Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Licensing Policy and the relevant legislation.

 

The Panel considered an incident in December 2006 where the applicant was arrested following an accusation that he raped a 16-year-old female passenger whilst working in his capacity as a hackney carriage driver for a neighbouring licensing authority.  The applicant admitted to having sexual intercourse with his passenger but denied raping her.  The allegation of rape was subsequently withdrawn.  The applicant informed the Panel that he had regretted the incident.  The Panel noted that, at the time of the incident, the applicant was 29-years-old, married with two children and did not have a personal relationship with the passenger.  The Panel was satisfied that the applicant was not seeking a serious romantic relationship with his teenage passenger and that he abused his position for sexual gratification.

 

The Panel had serious concerns about the applicant’s conduct with a young lone female passenger in his hackney carriage vehicle.  The Panel was also concerned that the applicant had potentially caused offence to the public by having sexual intercourse in a public place within a licensed vehicle.  The Panel was satisfied that this type of conduct raised serious concerns about the applicant’s fitness and propriety to be a licensed driver.

 

The Panel also considered an allegation made against the applicant in April 2016 by an 18-year-old female passenger.  The Panel was informed that the applicant was accused of asking the passenger inappropriate questions relating to her sexual experience, relationship status and whether she lived alone.  The applicant admitted to asking the passenger about her relationship status and whether she lived alone but denied asking if she was a virgin.  The Panel noted that the passenger had felt uncomfortable and fearful for her safety.  The applicant acknowledged that the passenger may have felt uncomfortable but he insisted that it was not his intent.  The Panel noted that, at the time of the accusation, the applicant had said that he did not believe it was inappropriate to ask those sorts of questions.

 

The Panel noted that the applicant was 36-years-old at the time of this incident and his passenger was 18-years-old; a lone female travelling late at night.  The Panel had concerns that the applicant had been unable to demonstrate appropriate behaviour on this occasion and had left a teenage girl fearful for  ...  view the full minutes text for item LAHP.16