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Agenda item

Licensing Fees Review (Determination of Fees) - 2016/17 Financial Year

Report of the Chief Licensing Officer



The Chief Licensing Officer submitted a report on the Licensing Fees Review (Determination of Fees) for the 2016/17 Financial Year and, attaching as appendices, a breakdown of the Licensing Service’s budget for 2016/17, the proposed fees for the different Licensing systems, details of the statutory fees and a schedule of fees relating to the safety of sports grounds.




In response to questions from members of the Committee, Steve Lonnia, Chief Licensing Officer, stated that when the new IT system was fully operational, it was hoped that the Service would achieve some significant savings.  This would enable the Service to invest more resources into enforcement work, customer service improvements and new facilities/equipment.  It was acknowledged that there had been a lengthy delay, and a number of problems associated with the introduction of the new IT system.  However, the Service could only continue to push Capita and IDOX in terms of what it wanted. It was hoped that customers would benefit from the new system, and would be able to start using electronic forms and making electronic payments with effect from August, 2016. In terms of consultation, as well as the proposed fees being widely circulated via correspondence prior to the report being submitted to the Committee, in relation to the increase in Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Carriage vehicle fees, these were required to undergo a further 28 day statutory consultation period.  A more than envisaged rise in the number of people making electronic applications could potentially result in a loss of income to the Service.  It was stated that regular monthly monitoring of the income would take place.  There were no significant licensing services or functions that the Council had chosen not to adopt, although a number of services or functions had been de-regulated over the years.  If there was sufficient funding in the Service’s contingency budget, this could be used to fund the unmet demand survey in respect of the Council’s Hackney Carriage Vehicle Licence Limitation Policy.  If there was not sufficient funding in this budget, such costs would be met by the Hackney Carriage vehicle licencees.




RESOLVED: That the public and press and attendees be excluded from the meeting before further discussion takes place on the grounds that, in view of the nature of the business to be transacted, if those persons were present, there would be a disclosure to them of exempt information as described in paragraph 5 of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972, as amended.




Marie-Claire Frankie reported orally, giving legal advice on various aspects of the report.




RESOLVED: That the Committee:




(a)       notes the contents of the report now submitted, together with the responses provided to the questions raised; and




(b)       in the light of the contents of the report now submitted,  authorises the Chief Licensing Officer to:-




(i)            impose the fees for 2016/17, as detailed in the report now submitted, with effect from 1st June, 2016; and




(ii)          advertise the fee increases relating to Hackney Carriage and Private Hire vehicles, and as now agreed by the Committee, in accordance with legislative requirements.




Supporting documents: