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Unfair Local Council rules for Taxi/Private Hire vehicle licencing

Comment 15th July 2010

The taxi / private hire licencing laws need rapid overhaul. The recently introduced vehicle licencing rules in each local council are all very different, you are penalised heavily for running a business in Suffolk Coastal with a 91 page document to adhere to every 6 months for a vehicle check, and you have a very limited choice of places for those vehicle checks with high set fees (which could be against Competition Law).

I would recommend a single national simplified vehicle licence process for taxis/private hire, aligned with annual MOT tests based around car and passenger safety, and you can source those licence tests anywhere in the UK as you can do for MOTs.

There are also issues with disproportionate increases in fees for operators of 5+ vehicles. There should be a simple fee structure that is charged on a vehicle basis (e.g. if you have 6 cars you have 6 x the vehicle fee only).

I believe this would create a fairer process for everyone in the trade.

Why does this matter?

The end result is that some councils are doing their very best to make this business unviable, and there have been people leaving and it puts people off joining the trade.  The local councils remit is to encourage businesses to thrive, not stifle them or force them to move to another area that has simpler rules and cheaper fees.

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