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Calls for a national database of taxi drivers in Wales

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Calls for a national database of taxi drivers in Wales 24th February 2019

Councillors in Bridgend have supported proposals for a national database of taxi drivers and private hire operators in Wales.

According to reports by Wales Online, at the moment there is no legal requirement for councils to share information with one another which might help them make decisions when they issue licenses.

Welsh local authorities set their own licensing standards leading to fears some drivers are applying for licenses in areas where standards are lower and then operating in areas whose standards they don’t meet – and where enforcement action cannot be taken against them.

There is no legislation which enables a council to take enforcement action against a driver licensed in a different local authority.

Licensing policy officer Daniel Cook is reported to have told councillors of Bridgend Council’s licensing committee: “The proposal to create national standards operating throughout Wales would hopefully reduce the risk of applicants choosing to shop around for lower standards.

“At the moment if a driver is refused a licence in Bridgend no-one in the 21 other local authorities would be aware of that.

“If they had received a criminal conviction that would show up on a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check but when their behaviour was questionable and didn’t lead to a conviction there is no way for other authorities to know.”

Councillors voted in favour of authorising the head of Shared Regulatory Services to respond to the consultation on behalf of the council.

They said they supported proposals for a shared database and the creation of national standards but said they preferred the option of allowing local authorities to continue to have responsibility for licensing taxis and private hire operators as opposed to control being passed into a national licensing authority.

Source: Wales Online

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