Agenda item - Review of Hackney Carriage Table of Fares

Agenda item

Review of Hackney Carriage Table of Fares


Members received a report on the Hackney Carriage Table of Fares and a supplementary agenda pack detailing updated information on fuel prices.


The Principal Licensing Officer, Worcestershire Regulatory Services (WRS), presented the report and in doing so informed the Committee that, officers had recently received a request on behalf of a number of hackney carriage licence holders for the current table of fares to be varied to increase the maximum fares that could be charged.


Hackney Carriage (“Taxi”) fares were made up of an initial hiring charge and a

“mileage” rate, both of which were expressed in terms of distance and / or time

per unit cost. This was because when a hired taxi was stationary or moving

slowly in traffic the meter continued charging, but by time, instead of distance.


The table of fares applied only to hackney carriage vehicles.  Private hire

operators were free to agree their hiring charges in advance with their

customers, normally at the time of booking the journey.


Appendix 1 to the report detailed the current table of fares.  The current table

of fares was approved by the Licensing Committee at its meeting held on 24th

June 2013 and had taken effect on 1st August 2013.


The structure of the current table of fares was somewhat complex.  The table

of fares was structured so as to set out one single tariff of charges and then

allowed the driver to charge extra depending on a number of factors including

the time and date when the journey commenced, how many passengers were

being carried, how the vehicle was booked and the visibility conditions.


Officers recently received correspondence, sent on behalf of a number of

hackney carriage licence holders, requesting that the Council gave

consideration to varying the table of fares.  The initial request was for a £1

increase to the charge for the first mile and for subsequent miles to increase

from the current level of around £1.77 per mile to £2 per mile.


Officers acknowledged this request and had asked representatives of the

hackney carriage trade whether they would like to try and also use this

opportunity to simplify the table of fares for drivers and passengers, as well as

with a view to providing those in the hackney carriage trade with a fair and

reasonable increase to the amount they could charge for journeys.


The hackney carriage trade representatives were receptive to this idea and

following liaison with officers regarding a more simplified structure for the

table of fares, a proposal was put forward that the table of fares be varied to

that as detailed at Appendix 2 to the report.


When drawing comparisons between hackney carriage fares in different

areas, the normal method used was to compare the cost of a 2-mile journey

on Tariff 1.  A table showing a comparison of the hackney carriage fares

charged for a 2-mile journey on Tariff 1 in other local districts was detailed at

Appendix 3 to the report.


If the table of fares proposed by the trade were to be implemented, this would

see the cost of a two mile journey on Tariff 1 increase from the current level of

£5.80 to £7.00, an increase of £1.20 or 20.7%.


Members’ attention was drawn to the Supplementary agenda pack which

provided updated information on current fuel prices.


The Principal Licensing Officer, WRS further informed the Committee that other

authorities would be looking at fares, due to the increase in the cost of living

and recent fuel cost increases.


Further debate followed, with the Principal Licensing Officer, WRS responding

to a number of questions from Members with regard to reviewing fares annually

and the possibility of reviewing any increased fares later during 2022, should

fuel prices reduce or circumstances merit it. 


In response to further questions from Members, the Principal Licensing

Officer, WRS, stated that private hire fares had significantly increased and that

hackney carriage fares had fallen behind.  Private hire drivers / operators could

react quickly to increase their fares, should the need arise.  However, hackney

carriage fares under Section 65 (1) of the Local Government (Miscellaneous

Provisions ACT 1976 stated that a district council may fix the rates or fares

within the district and that any variation should be published in at least one

local newspaper and that any objections received had to be considered by the

district council.


Members commented that they had welcomed the report, but were somewhat

surprised that it had been 9 years since the hackney carriage table of fares was

last reviewed.


An amendment to the recommendation that “an interim review of Hackney Carriage Table of Fares if circumstances merit it”, be included, was proposed and seconded.


On being put to the vote, the Committee voted in favour of the amended recommendation.


RESOLVEDthat the requested variations to the table of fares, be agreed and  

a)         that the proposed table of taxi fares as set out in Appendix 2 to the report, be advertised as a public notice and objections from the public invited in accordance with the requirements of section 65, Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, 1976; 

b)         that if no objections were received from the public within 14 days of publication of the notice that the proposed tariff to come into effect on 16 May 2022.


c)         that if objections were received in the stated time, that the matter to be considered further at the next meeting of the Licensing Committee, and a decision made as to whether the variations to the table of fares should be made; and


d)         that an interim review of the Hackney Carriage Table of Fares, if

circumstances merit it, be carried out.  







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