The Assistant Director of Improving Public Health submitted an exempt report in connection with the review of Private Hire Vehicle Driver Licence, Ref: 05/16, where circumstances had arisen which required special consideration by the Committee.
The Chair introduced those present and outlined the procedure to be followed. The applicant, who was in attendance at the meeting, verified his name and address and confirmed that he had received a copy of the report.
The driver was first licensed as a Private Hire Vehicle Driver in 2013 and his current licence was due to expire on 29 February 2016. The driver had informed the Licensing Section on 14 December 2015 that he had on that day been found guilty at Teesside Magistrates Court of the offence detailed at 1) in the report. Confirmation of the offence was subsequently obtained via the Police Notifiable Occupations Scheme.
The driver had been interviewed by the Senior Licensing Officer in relation to the above offence on 22 December 2015, at which time he had confirmed that there were no outstanding matters of which the Council were unaware and offered an explanation in relation to the offence detailed at 1) in the report.
The Principal Licensing Officer presented the report setting out the circumstances of the case in relation to the offence detailed at 1) in the submitted report. The Council's legal representative advised Members with regard to the definition of Unconditional Discharge.
The driver confirmed that the report was an accurate representation of the facts and was invited to address the Committee. The driver presented his case and responded to questions from Members of the Committee.
It was confirmed that there were no further questions and the driver and officers of the Council, other than representatives of the Councils Legal Services and Members Office, withdrew whilst the Committee determined the application.
Subsequently all interested parties returned and the Chair announced the Committees decision.
ORDERED that Private Hire Vehicle Driver Licence, Ref 05/16, be retained but that the driver be issued with a warning regarding his future conduct.
In making their decision the Committee had taken into account the level of the sentence given by the Magistrates Court in respect of the conviction dated 14 December 2015. The driver was given an Unconditional Discharge and the Committee considered that this was at the lower end of the sentences available for this conviction.