Friday, February 03, 2017

Legislation, Legislation, Legislation is all you need… by Lee Ward.


So, that old chestnut legislation, you know, the thing that every politician falls back on when the industry want something changed to protect its future or indeed the public. That word legislation where they make out that a report must be done, then a consultation, then it goes through Commons and then Lords before it gets the Royal approval to become Law. We have all heard it right?
And then we go away expecting that in the background someone somewhere has started this report to get the ball rolling and in a few years’ time, if we are still around, it comes to pass and all will be well again…

Well, I will be honest, that’s how I thought it went anyway. Until today.

You see, I found out today while searching the internet as I do between jobs (yes, I have time to do a lot of surfing these days) I came across something on the Governments website and it’s to do with Legislation (http://j.mp/2ky8d0t)

Delegated Legislation
Delegated or secondary legislation is usually concerned with detailed changes to the law made under powers from an existing Act of Parliament. Statutory instruments form the majority of delegated legislation but it can also include Rules or Codes of Practice.

What delegated legislation does
Delegated legislation allows the Government to make changes to a law without needing to push through a completely new Act of Parliament. The original Act (also known as primary legislation) would have provisions that allow for future delegated legislation to alter the law to differing degrees.

These changes range from the technical, like altering the level of a fine, to fleshing out Acts with greater detail; often an Act contains only a broad framework of its purpose and more complex content is added through delegated legislation.

So, let me get this right, all those issues about Cross Border Hiring, Hackneys working as Private Hire Vehicles hundreds of miles away from where they are licensed, an App being legal or not and even capping of licenses could be dealt with easily because all that was needed was the 1976 Act needed ‘fleshing out’ with more detail, detail that would clarify what the intention of the Act was in 1976 before technology blurred the borders of one area to the next simply because the industry no longer relies on a radio waves ability over distanceto transmit the information to the mobile radio in a driver’s car…

Wow, it’s that easy to deal with, and so difficult for the people that we vote into power to explain to us and then kick into gear. All we needed was someone who is an MP and a Lawyer to know this, hands up if anyone is both of these…


And we have a winner !!!
 
So answer me this then, why does it take a humble, uneducated (scratch that, for a change I will not lower myself, I deserve more than that even if I say it myself) hard working driver to find these solutions when the people that get paid the money will not come forward with the answer to the problem.

As usual I dug further on what I have found and I came up with this in regards to the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976

Changes and effects yet to be applied to the whole Act associated Parts and Chapters
23 changes and effects yet to be applied
Commencement Orders yet to be applied to the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976
3 Commencement Orders yet to be applied.

So it is and can be done, as shows with the TWENTY SIX changes to the 1976 Act that governs our industry that I doubt very few had even been aware had changed, apart from perhaps Section 61 as amended by Section 52 of the Road Transport Act 2008, I assume you all know about that one, it is 8 years old after all.

I mean, you guys know all about the changes to the LGMPA 1976 because in 2016 they introduced the Immigration Act and all the changes that it made to the LGMPA 1976, didn’t you?

Well have a look, it shouldn’t take long, because we would have known all about it, or they would have at least the decency to deal with the issues of our trade in 2016 while they had their thinking caps on and quills at the ready (http://j.mp/2kymDgP)

Calmed down yet? Or did you dare not look….


So we have a problem, and we need a solution, I believe this solution is found by the following Formula
 


Therefore, my proposals by using the Delegated Legislation to the LGMPA 1976 would be as follows, and I have put what I propose in red for ease of reference

47​Licensing of hackney carriages.

47​Licensing of hackney carriages.

(1) A district council may attach to the grant of a licence of a hackney carriage under the Act of 1847 such conditions as the district council may consider reasonably necessary. 
(2) Without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing subsection, a district council may require any hackney carriage licensed by them under the Act of 1847 to be of such design or appearance or bear such distinguishing marks as shall clearly identify it as a hackney carriage. 
(3) Any person aggrieved by any conditions attached to such a licence may appeal to a magistrates’ court.
 
48 ​Licensing of private hire vehicles.

(1) Subject to the provisions of this Part of this Act, a district council may on the receipt of an application from the proprietor of any vehicle for the grant in respect of such vehicle of a licence to use the vehicle as a private hire vehicle, grant in respect thereof a vehicle licence: 
Provided that a district council shall not grant such a licence unless they are satisfied— 
(a) that the vehicle is— 
(i) suitable in type, size and design for use as a private hire vehicle; 
(ii) not of such design and appearance as to lead any person to believe that the vehicle is a hackney carriage; 
(iii) in a suitable mechanical condition; 
(iv) safe; and 
(v) comfortable; 
(b) that there is in force in relation to the use of the vehicle a policy of insurance or such security as complies with the requirements of [F2Part VI of the Road Traffic Act 1988], 
and shall not refuse such a licence for the purpose of limiting the number of vehicles in respect of which such licences are granted by the council.

(2) A district council may attach to the grant of a licence under this section such conditions as they may consider reasonably necessary including, without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing provisions of this subsection, conditions requiring or prohibiting the display of signs on or from the vehicle to which the licence relates. 

(3) In every vehicle licence granted under this section there shall be specified— 
(a) the name and address of— 
(i) the applicant; and 
(ii) every other person who is a proprietor of the private hire vehicle in respect of which the licence is granted, or who is concerned, either solely or in partnership with any other person, in the keeping, employing or letting on hire of the private hire vehicle; 
(b) the number of the licence which shall correspond with the number to be painted or marked on the plate or disc to be exhibited on the private hire vehicle in accordance with subsection (6) of this section; 
(c) the conditions attached to the grant of the licence; and 
(d) such other particulars as the district council consider reasonably necessary. 

(4) Every licence granted under this section shall— 
(a) be signed by an authorised officer of the council which granted it; 
(b) relate to not more than one private hire vehicle; and 
(c) remain in force for such period not being longer than one year as the district council may specify in the licence. 

(5) Where a district council grant under this section a vehicle licence in respect of a private hire vehicle they shall issue a plate or disc identifying that vehicle as a private hire vehicle in respect of which a vehicle licence has been granted. 

(6) (a) Subject to the provisions of this Part of this Act, no person shall use or permit to be used in a controlled district as a private hire vehicle in respect of which a licence has been granted under this section unless the plate or disc issued in accordance with subsection (5) of this section is exhibited on the vehicle in such manner as the district council shall prescribe by condition attached to the grant of the licence.
(b) If any person without reasonable excuse contravenes the provisions of this subsection he shall be guilty of an offence. 

(7) Any person aggrieved by the refusal of a district council to grant a vehicle licence under this section, or by any conditions specified in such a licence, may appeal to a magistrates’ court.
 
Hold on, have I not just dealt with Cross Border Hiring and the drivers who go and get a Hackney License somewhere that’s easy to obtain and then work as a Private Hire elsewhere?
Well, lets be safe about the Hackneys working as Private Hire shall we.

67 Hackney carriages used for private hire.
(1) No hackney carriage shall be used in the district under a contract or purported contract for private hire except at a rate of fares or charges not greater than that fixed by the byelaws or tables mentioned in section 66 of this Act, and, when any such hackney carriage is so used, the fare or charge shall be calculated from the point in the district at which the hirer commences his journey.
(2) Any person who knowingly contravenes this section shall be guilty of an offence.

(3) In subsection (1) of this section “contract” means—
(a) a contract made otherwise than while the relevant hackney carriage is plying for hire in the district or waiting at a place in the district which, when the contract is made, is a stand for hackney carriages appointed by the district council under section 63 of this Act; and
(b) a contract made, otherwise than with or through the driver of the relevant hackney carriage, while it is so plying or waiting.
 
But, lets be clear on the Operators also, it would be only right, after all

56 Operators of private hire vehicles.
(1) For the purposes of this Part of this Act every contract for the hire of a private hire vehicle licensed under this Part of this Act shall be deemed to be made with the operator who accepted the booking for that vehicle whether or not he himself provided the vehicle.
(2) Every person to whom a licence in force under section 55 of this Act has been granted by a district council shall keep a record in such form as the council may, by condition attached to the grant of the licence, prescribe and shall enter therein, before the commencement of each journey, such particulars of every booking of a private hire vehicle invited or accepted by him, whether by accepting the same from the hirer or by undertaking it at the request of another operator, as the district council may by condition prescribe and shall produce such record on request to any authorised officer of the council or to any constable for inspection.

(3) Every person to whom a licence in force under section 55 of this Act has been granted by a district council shall keep such records as the council may, by conditions attached to the grant of the licence, prescribe of the particulars of any private hire vehicle operated by him and shall produce the same on request to any authorised officer of the council or to any constable for inspection.

(4) A person to whom a licence in force under section 55 of this Act has been granted by a district council shall produce the licence on request to any authorised officer of the council or any constable for inspection.

(5) If any person without reasonable excuse contravenes the provisions of this section, he shall be guilty of an offence.
 
And that’s just clarified the acceptance of bookings made by Apps.

This brings the LGMPA 1976 into the modern world while keeping the true intentions of the Act safe and secure, now who wouldn’t want that?

Granted, I am not a legal eagle and maybe my wording would need a slight tweak here and there, but it cost me a total of 2 pint cans of Stella Artois and 6 cigs to sort this out, now that’s a Yorkshireman’s budget if ever there was one.


So it was that easy Wardy? Yes mate, it was…..
 

8 comments:

Steven Toy said...

Predominantly is fairly easy to define. The term was first used in Newcastle -v- Berwick upon Tweed 2008.

"A Hackney Carriage shall work predominantly in the area in which it is licensed" basically covers it and renders the following either unnecessary or a contradiction:

67 (1) (a) "A private hire booking must start, finish or pass through the area in which the vehicle is licensed."

This is a contradiction because its implication is that a licensed vehicle is no longer required to work predominantly in the area in which it is licensed but exclusively so.

Whilst it would be effective in preventing a vehicle from working in an area 100 miles away from the area in which it was licensed it would also play havoc with the provision of taxi services in rural areas, particularly those based in, say, a small town located close to the boundaries of its licensing area.

I'll give you an example: I work in a small town as a saloon Hackney Carriage driver as is common in semi-rural districts. In the town there are two railway stations and one taxi rank. One of the railway stations is a quarter of a mile from the taxi rank in one direction, the other is three-quarters of a mile in the opposite direction and just over the boundary in the neighbouring district. Despite not being in the same district as the town centre, this station bears the same name as the town.

According to Lee Ward 's proposed 67 (1) (a), if a booking was accepted by our office from this railway station to an outlying village two miles away it could not be dispatched to any of our vehicles in the town, perhaps sitting on the taxi rank only three-quarters of a mile away.

Instead we would be forced to subcontract the booking to an Operator based in the same district as where the railway station was situated.

The nearest such operator based in the same district is 8 miles away!

Suffice to say, anyone alighting from that railway station would be effectively stranded and forced to walk the two miles with their luggage.

We would also be forced effectively to turn away one of our own customers who had called our office in good faith.

Can you not see the irony here?

We would be forced to subcontract the job to an out-of-area vehicle, in order for it literally to be from the area where the customer happened to be when they booked their taxi and despite only being less than a mile away!

The word 'predominantly' covers it nicely. It is there so that drivers like me can do most of our work in our own area that either starts, finishes or passes through our own area and also a few jobs in the neighbouring district.

I agree with Lee on many things but, alas, this particular method for catching tuna also picks up a few dolphins.

Anonymous said...

A great post Lee once again. But bear in mind, you can have all the legislation in the world , but if nobody is there to enforce it, it's not worth a rub mate, just like our two former and one current Mayor. I would actually go as far to say that Khan is the most useless of the three. Two bob Lee. They can't enforce the legislation that's already there mate. Legislation with adequate COMPLIANCE. Now you're cooking with gas.
Keep punching, our kid.
Semtex.

Bob123 said...


Top man Lee
Let's hope one of our orgs with a bit of money get the ball rolling
Once again top man top post

TAXIVET said...

I just signed the Sadik khan protest list for him to resign as Mayor. Any chance of making this mans job a misery i would do constantly. Get on it colleagues......

Anonymous said...

We just need someone to do their job and enforce the rules already in place.anybody anybody ANYBODY. I don't think there's anybody with a will to follow through.
Great post Lee
The fat girl

lee ward said...

Myself and Steven Toy have spoke on the phone today and the confusion is now sorted, I have worked with Steven for a good few months now and unfortunately he was unable to wake me before he left his comment lol.

He should know better, I get up at 7am, work till about 8pm, go online or PC till 1am, and try to sleep somewhere between those hours...

6am is not on my time line...ever lol

lee ward said...

Semtex

I agree with your comment 100%, but has any one questioned where the money from all these PH plates is going?

The cost of the plate is for making and checking that the plate is allowed on the vehicle, the rest of that plate money is and CAN ONLY be used to police these plates while out on the road....

I dont know the cost of a PHV plate in London, but lets say its 200 quid..

They have £200 x 98,000 = £19,600,000 less say 20% for making and administering them that leaves £15,680,000 so.....they gave you 250 new officers that quadrupled the force, lets see... shall we be nice and say they now have 360 officers then each officer could potentially be earning £44,800 per year......

I doubt that, even for London wages...

Rob said...

Sir, this gentleman is a great asset,source of knowledge and inspiration. Undoubtedly thoughtful and detailed in his application. I fear the simple reason TfL/Khant will not touch Uber and it's like is because they see them as a conduit of great simplicity,full stop.They think our trade has become moribund and out of touch. A gross misrepresentation and falsehood.Attempting to explain Mr Wards suggestion to The triumvirate of evil would be as likely as a gimp such as Leon Daniels dating Rachel Riley. They over burden legislate/ bureaucratise our trade and force it into foolhardy expensive mistakes. (The outrageous act of forcing DAC to design and install a new cradle for credit card machines is but one of a whole number of such perverse and confrontational issues). When the trade quite properly attempts to remedy wrong doing(as here) on truthfully an epic scale such as Uber,they are dismissive. It's the simple option. TfL would like to portray us a victim of social change. 'It's what people want'. However,it's TfL which is the malady that makes our very existence such a fraught prospect.