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Welsh Government joint transport authority criticised

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Welsh Government joint transport authority criticised 24th February 2019

The Welsh Government’s plans to setup a joint transport authority for taxi and private hire licensing has been criticised by Monmouthshire Council.

The council said the plans will see it lose up to £60,000 a year in income.

Under the Welsh Government’s proposals, the licensing of taxis and private hire will become the responsibility of a joint transport authority and no longer that of local councils in Wales.

The council said the proposals lack detail and falling short of the reform that ‘inadequate’ licensing legislation requires.

Conservative councillor Jane Pratt said the document failed to consider ‘fast-changing’ technological advances within the industry such as the mobile apps Uber and ViaVan.

“Taxis as we know them are going to change. ViaVan is in London, Berlin, Amsterdam but it is bound to go across the country eventually,” said Cllr Pratt.

“This is the future, but [the white paper] is not up to date and not covering the subjects it needs to. I don’t think Welsh Government is moving quickly enough with the times.”

Support was also given to the response’s assertion that enforcement should remain within local authorities which were ‘more knowledgeable’ of issues within their night-time economies.

David Jones, head of public protection, argued that creating a JTA would cause a disconnect between the ‘critical’ intelligence gathering of councils and local police.

Source: South Wales Argus

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